A majority of U.S. adults identify as Christian, while the number of religiously unaffiliated (“nones”) and respondents of other faith traditions continues to increase, according to Pew Research Center data published on September 21.
In the 2022 National Public Opinion Reference Survey, a plurality (41%) of respondents identified as Protestants, followed by the religiously unaffiliated (31%), Catholics (18%) and other faith traditions (9%).
The 2021 NPORS survey found that 40% identified as Protestant, 29% as religiously unaffiliated, 21% as Catholic, and 6% as other religious traditions.
In the inaugural 2020 NPORS survey, 41% of adults identified themselves as Protestant, 28% as religiously unaffiliated, 21% as Catholic and 7% as another faith tradition.
Using a different survey method, Pew found in 2007 that 44.4% identified as Protestant, 23.9% as Catholic, 16.1% as religiously unaffiliated and 4.7% as another faith tradition. By 2014, the numbers were: 40.1% Protestant, 20.8% Catholic, 22.8% unaffiliated, and 5.9% other faiths.
From 2007 to 2022, Protestants have decreased by 3.4% and Catholics by 5.9%, while the religiously unaffiliated have increased by 14.9% and other faith traditions by 4.3%.
The 2022 data was collected via online and print surveys between May 23 and September 6, 2022, as part of Pew’s annual National Public Opinion Reference Survey. As explained in the survey methodology, participants receive a letter in the mail inviting them to participate in the survey online, with a second letter offering a printed survey option to those who didn’t respond to the initial letter.
This survey and approach was launched in 2020 as a means to determine causes and impacts of disparities between two other Pew surveys in terms of both the number of respondents and the data collected.