by Frank Newport, Gallup Poll, 12/24/14.
- About half of Americans are Protestant; a quarter are Catholic
- 19% of Americans do not have a formal religious identity
- Mormons attend religious services most frequently
PRINCETON, N.J. — About three in four Americans interviewed in 2014 name a Christian faith when asked for their religious preference, including 50% who are Protestants or another non-Catholic Christian religion, 24% who are Catholic and 2% who are Mormon.
These data are based on 173,490 interviews conducted from Jan. 2 through Dec. 21 as part of Gallup Daily tracking.
The proportion of Americans identifying as Protestant dropped by one percentage point from 2013 to 2014, while the Catholic and Mormon percentages stayed essentially the same.
About 6% of Americans identify with a non-Christian religion, including 2% who are Jewish, less than 1% who are Muslim and 3% who identify with other non-Christian religions. This leaves 16% who say they don’t have a religious preference, along with another 3% who don’t answer the question. This combined 19% without a formal religious identity is up one point from 2013.
The slight erosion of Americans’ identification as Protestant and concomitantly slight increase in the percentage with no religious preference exemplifies general trends in religious identity over the past decades. In the 1950s, Gallup surveys showed that up to 71% of Americans identified as Protestant, and small percentages had no religious identity. Then, as now, however, well more than 90% of Americans who express a religious preference identify themselves as Christians…