Pew Study Finds Majority of Churchgoers, Especially Evangelicals, Share Same Political Opinions as Their Pastors

A majority of churchgoers say they share the opinions of their clergy when it comes to politics, and evangelical Protestants are more likely than others to align with their spiritual leaders, according to a new study from the Pew Research Center.

The analysis, based on data collected in 2019, shows that 62% of Americans who attend religious services at least a few times a year generally agree with their clergy about politics.

“Evangelical Protestants are particularly likely to do so (76%), compared with fewer who say this in the historically black Protestant (65%), mainline Protestant (58%) and Catholic traditions (53%),” Pew said.

While the study did not say how frequently politics is discussed in church, it noted that respondents to the survey were generally satisfied with the amount of political talk they hear from the pulpit.

“Among Americans who attend worship services a few times a year or more often, 72% say there is about the right amount of political discussion in sermons, while fewer say there’s too much (11%) or not enough (14%),” Pew’s  Claire Gecewicz noted.

Among U.S. adults who attend religious services a few times a year or more often, however, a significant minority, 45%, were not sure if the clergy at their congregation are Democrats or Republicans. Some 27% say their clergy are a mix of both, while 16% of respondents who felt they knew the political affiliation of their religious leaders say they are mostly Republican, while 11% identified their religious leaders as Democrats.

The study also noted that a majority of Americans in general feel churches should keep out of political matters even as evangelical Christian voters remain a loyal voting bloc for President Donald Trump.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Leonardo Blair