Additionally, fewer churchgoers are seemingly unsure about the political opinions of their fellow congregation members. In 2017, 30% said they weren’t sure if their political views matched those of most others at the church. That dropped to 22% in 2022.
“If one looks at the culture today, you might assume that most churches have been arguing over politics as well. While it appears more churchgoers notice the political views of other attendees, only 28% of pastors agree (14% strongly) that their church has experienced significant conflict in the last year,” said McConnell. “Those who want political continuity may simply want a respite from political strife at church, and others may want to move together in political action.”
For many groups, their perception of their church matches their preferences. Older churchgoers, those 65 and older, are the least likely to think most people in their church share their politics (46%) and the most likely to say they aren’t sure (32%). African American (60%) and white (58%) churchgoers are also among the most likely to agree. Denominationally, Methodists (89%) and those a part of a Restorationist movement church (76%) believe most of the fellow churchgoers share their political views.
Churchgoers who don’t qualify as evangelical by belief are just as likely to say they prefer to worship in a church that shared their politics (54%) as they are to believe that is the case (53%). Churchgoers with evangelical beliefs, however, are different. They’re more likely to believe they belong to a congregation that predominantly agrees with them politically (59%) than they are to say that’s what they’d prefer (44%).
For more information, view the complete report.
This article originally appeared here.