We’re Number 95!

We’re Number 95! January 26, 2013

The Barna Group has completed a survey of the most “Bible Minded” regions in America:

“The study is based on 42,855 interviews conducted nationwide and the analysis of Bible trends was commissioned by American Bible Society. Individuals who report reading the Bible in a typical week and who strongly assert the Bible is accurate in the principles it teaches are considered to be Bible-minded. This definition captures action and attitude—those who both engage and esteem the Christian scriptures. The rankings thus reflect an overall openness or resistance to the Bible in the country’s largest markets.”

I’m sure that we could quibble about the methodology and definitions here, but whev. Its not a survey that’s going to surprise anyone. It confirms that the Bible belt does still exist, and that the north east is the least Biblically centered region. Urban areas are less likely to be Biblically minded than rural areas.

Coming in at next to last place is my home in the capital region (Albany/Schenectady/Troy) at 10% of … whatever it is that they measure. Woohooo! From one of their feeds they report, “Just one in five residents of Albany, NY read the Bible in the past week (19%)” Worse news: I’m one of the 19%, and I’m an atheist.

Of course, at #96 the least Biblically minded city is Providence, RI, where Elemenope used to hail from. Kind of ironic that a city named “Providence” would come in last, but it is Lovecraft country.

Another feed reports, “Albany, NY has the highest percent of Christians who have not made a commitment to Jesus (59%),” and the terminology pretty much gives away their game: you’re either an Evangelical or you don’t really count. They don’t discuss religious diversity or the rise of the nones, they talk about “openness or resistance to the Bible.”

Albany is a diverse place with lots of different Christian denominations, but Barna is basically a marketing research group for Evangelical Christians. I doubt they’d consider our healthy UU population to “real Christians,” or our Korean Christian community to be appropriately “Bible minded.” All this probably means that there will be more evangelism and church planting in my area.

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