By our Religious Correspondent
Washington, Oct 22 (IVC) Christianity remained the most common religion among Asian Americans despite an overall decline in the number of people following religions, according to the latest Pew survey.
About 34 per cent of Asian American adults identified their religion as Christianity in 2023, from 42 per cent in 2012, the survey revealed. “Despite recent declines, Christianity is still the most common religion among Asian Americans”, the survey report released by Pew Research Centre here on October 11 said.
Among the respondents who said that they were Christians, around 17 per cent were Catholics and 16 per cent were Protestants> One -tenth of Asian Americans were Buddhists and Hindus while Muslims were only six per cent.
Other Asian religious groups including Daoists, Jains, Jews and Sikhs together made up four per cent of all Asian Americans adults. Six Asian origin groups – Chinese, Filipino, Indian, Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese Americans constituted about 81 per cent of roughly 7,000 Asian Americans surveyed.
The survey also looked at the various largest subgroups within Christianity, both Protestants and Catholics. The result showed an overall decline in numbers in 2023 compared to the previous survey conducted in 2012.
Protestants had come down 16 per cent in 2023 from 22 per cent in 2012. The Evangelicals who were included within the Protestant subgroup also showed a decline to 10 per cent from 13 per cent for the same period.
“The share of the Catholics is more stable”, report said. Followers of Catholicism were reported to have declined to 17 per cent in 2023 from 19 per cent in 2012.
The survey also analyzed how Asian Americans identify themselves as “close” to Christianity despite being non-adherent to any specific religion.
“Many who do not identify with a specific religion still say they consider themselves close to the religious or philosophical traditions that are common in their country of ancestry”, the survey report revealed.
About 18 per cent of Asian Americans , while not identifying as Christians , said that they feel “close to” Christianity “aside from religion” for reasons suc as family background or culture. In total 40 per cent of Asian American adults express a connection to one or more groups that they do not claim a religious identity, the survey revealed.