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Americans Don't Know Much About Religion...

Posted by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:09 AM
  • 12 Replies

 http://omaha.com/article/20100928/AP03/309289973

I found this interesting and wanted to share. It's not meant to bash anyone or cause any grief, and I'm certainly not going to claim that I know everything about religion. I just thought some of you might be interested! :) If you click on the link for the article, at the end of the article is a link to a short religions quiz. It didn't work for me when I clicked on it, and I really wanted to take it. If any of you are able take the quiz, maybe you can share how you did! :)

(AP) - A new survey of Americans' knowledge of religion found that atheists, agnostics, Jews and Mormons outperformed Protestants and Roman Catholics in answering questions about major religions, while many respondents could not correctly give the most basic tenets of their own faiths.

Forty-five percent of Roman Catholics who participated in the study didn't know that, according to church teaching, the bread and wine used in Holy Communion is not just a symbol, but becomes the body and blood of Christ.

More than half of Protestants could not identify Martin Luther as the person who inspired the Protestant Reformation. And about four in 10 Jews did not know that Maimonides, one of the greatest rabbis and intellectuals in history, was Jewish.

The survey released Tuesday by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life aimed to test a broad range of religious knowledge, including understanding of the Bible, core teachings of different faiths and major figures in religious history. The U.S. is one of the most religious countries in the developed world, especially compared to largely secular Western Europe, but faith leaders and educators have long lamented that Americans still know relatively little about religion.

Respondents to the survey were asked 32 questions with a range of difficulty, including whether they could name the Islamic holy book and the first book of the Bible, or say what century the Mormon religion was founded. On average, participants in the survey answered correctly overall for half of the survey questions.

Atheists and agnostics scored highest, with an average of 21 correct answers, while Jews and Mormons followed with about 20 accurate responses. Protestants overall averaged 16 correct answers, while Catholics followed with a score of about 15.

Not surprisingly, those who said they attended worship at least once a week and considered religion important in their lives often performed better on the overall survey. However, level of education was the best predictor of religious knowledge. The top-performing groups on the survey still came out ahead even when controlling for how much schooling they had completed.

On questions about Christianity, Mormons scored the highest, with an average of about eight correct answers out of 12, followed by white evangelicals, with an average of just over seven correct answers. Jews, along with atheists and agnostics, knew the most about other faiths, such as Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism and Judaism. Less than half of Americans know that the Dalai Lama is Buddhist, and less than four in 10 know that Vishnu and Shiva are part of Hinduism.

The study also found that many Americans don't understand constitutional restrictions on religion in public schools. While a majority know that public school teachers cannot lead classes in prayer, less than a quarter know that the U.S. Supreme Court has clearly stated that teachers can read from the Bible as an example of literature.

"Many Americans think the constitutional restrictions on religion in public schools are tighter than they really are," Pew researchers wrote.

The survey of 3,412 people, conducted between May and June of this year, had a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points, while the margins of error for individual religious groups was higher.

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by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:09 AM
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Replies (1-10):
gypsy_rose
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:13 AM

wow lol very interesting but not surprising

RheaF
by Sweet Insanity on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:14 AM

 Interesting, however, it does not surprise me at all.

Candi1024
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:15 AM

Thus why my children are/will be attending sunday school.

hope5765
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:17 AM

I read this and it did not surprise me. Being the wife of a Pastor I know a considerable amount about religion; my own and others. We run into many people that are confused about what they believe.

hope5765
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:19 AM


Quoting Candi1024:

Thus why my children are/will be attending sunday school.

So glad to hear that your children will be attending Sunday School.

radioheid
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:32 AM

Trying to take the quiz, but the server is bogged down. Cant seem to get past that fourth question about when the Jewish Sabbath begins. LOL I keep getting a "Problem Loading Page" message. *sigh*

aidansmommy219
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:34 AM
bump for later
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
radioheid
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:50 AM

You answered 14 out of 15 questions correctly
for a score of 93%.

Question Your Response Correct Answer % of survey respondents answering correctly
1. Which Bible figure is most closely associated with leading the exodus from Egypt? correct Answer Moses Moses 72%
2. What was Mother Teresa's religion? correct Answer Catholic Catholic 82
3. Which of the following is NOT one of the Ten Commandments? correct Answer Do unto others as you would have them do unto you Do unto others as you would have them do unto you 55
4. When does the Jewish Sabbath begin? correct Answer Friday Friday 45
5. Is Ramadan…? correct Answer The Islamic holy month The Islamic holy month 52
6. Which of the following best describes the Catholic teaching about the bread and wine used for Communion? correct Answer The bread and wine actually become the body and blood of Jesus Christ. The bread and wine actually become the body and blood of Jesus Christ. 40
7. In which religion are Vishnu and Shiva central figures? correct Answer Hinduism Hinduism 38
8. Which Bible figure is most closely associated with remaining obedient to God despite suffering? correct Answer Job Job 39
9. What was Joseph Smith's religion? correct Answer Mormon Mormon 51
10. According to rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court, is a public school teacher permitted to lead a class in prayer, or not? correct Answer No, not permitted No, not permitted 89
11. According to rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court, is a public school teacher permitted to read from the Bible as an example of literature, or not? correct Answer Yes, permitted Yes, permitted 23
12. What religion do most people in Pakistan consider themselves? correct Answer Muslim Muslim 68
13. What was the name of the person whose writings and actions inspired the Protestant Reformation? correct Answer Martin Luther Martin Luther 46
14. Which of these religions aims at nirvana, the state of being free from suffering? correct Answer Buddhism Buddhism 36
15. Which one of these preachers participated in the period of religious activity known as the First Great Awakening? wrong Answer Billy Graham Jonathan Edwards 1
radioheid
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 11:51 AM

Booyah, bitches. LOL

Quoting radioheid:

You answered 14 out of 15 questions correctly
for a score of 93%.

Question Your Response Correct Answer % of survey respondents answering correctly
1. Which Bible figure is most closely associated with leading the exodus from Egypt? correct Answer Moses Moses 72%
2. What was Mother Teresa's religion? correct Answer Catholic Catholic 82
3. Which of the following is NOT one of the Ten Commandments? correct Answer Do unto others as you would have them do unto you Do unto others as you would have them do unto you 55
4. When does the Jewish Sabbath begin? correct Answer Friday Friday 45
5. Is Ramadan…? correct Answer The Islamic holy month The Islamic holy month 52
6. Which of the following best describes the Catholic teaching about the bread and wine used for Communion? correct Answer The bread and wine actually become the body and blood of Jesus Christ. The bread and wine actually become the body and blood of Jesus Christ. 40
7. In which religion are Vishnu and Shiva central figures? correct Answer Hinduism Hinduism 38
8. Which Bible figure is most closely associated with remaining obedient to God despite suffering? correct Answer Job Job 39
9. What was Joseph Smith's religion? correct Answer Mormon Mormon 51
10. According to rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court, is a public school teacher permitted to lead a class in prayer, or not? correct Answer No, not permitted No, not permitted 89
11. According to rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court, is a public school teacher permitted to read from the Bible as an example of literature, or not? correct Answer Yes, permitted Yes, permitted 23
12. What religion do most people in Pakistan consider themselves? correct Answer Muslim Muslim 68
13. What was the name of the person whose writings and actions inspired the Protestant Reformation? correct Answer Martin Luther Martin Luther 46
14. Which of these religions aims at nirvana, the state of being free from suffering? correct Answer Buddhism Buddhism 36
15. Which one of these preachers participated in the period of religious activity known as the First Great Awakening? wrong Answer Billy Graham Jonathan Edwards 1


hope5765
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 12:02 PM

I have been trying to take the quiz, but they are having website issues.

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