Cradle Christians: Protestants Keep the Faith Better Than Catholics or Nones

Pew examines which parents successfully pass their religion to their kids—and whether mom or dad mattered most.
Cradle Christians: Protestants Keep the Faith Better Than Catholics or Nones

American Protestants are keeping their children in the faith at a higher rate than Catholics or the unaffiliated, according to the latest study from the Pew Research Center.

Four out of five children raised by two Protestant parents remained Protestant into adulthood. For those raised in Protestant homes where religion was very important or often discussed, the retention rate jumps even higher (85% and 89%, respectively).

For those raised by a single parent who was Protestant, the retention rate doesn’t dip much. Three-quarters of American adults who had a Protestant single parent still identify as Protestant.

Those raised by two Catholic or unaffiliated parents, on the other hand, were equally less likely (62%) to remain in their parents’ religion—or lack thereof.

Protestantism is also gaining a larger percentage of adherents from Catholicism and the ranks of the unaffiliated than it is losing to both groups. (However, given US Protestantism’s larger base—about ...

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