In Spring 2008, the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life published the results of its U.S. Religious Landscape Survey, a national sampling of the religious affiliations of more than 35,000 Americans undertaken over the summer of 2007. The news drawn from it, at least as widely summarized in the media, amounted to three main headlines. One: For the first time in American history, Protestantism is close to becoming the faith of fewer than half of all Americans (51.3 percent). Two: There is a substantial minority of religiously unaffiliated Americans (16.1 percent). And three: The Catholic Church would be much diminished in its current share of the U.S. population (23.9 percent) if it were not for Hispanic immigrants.
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