Rising Restrictions on Religion – One-third of the world’s population experiences an increase
Restrictions on religious beliefs and practices rose in 23 of the world’s 198 countries (12%), decreased in 12 countries (6%) and remained essentially unchanged in 163 countries (82%) between mid-2006 and mid-2009, a new Pew Forum report shows. More than 2.2 billion people – nearly a third of the world’s population – live in the 23 countries with increasing government restrictions or social hostilities involving religion.
Global Survey of Evangelical Protestant Leaders
Evangelical Protestant leaders who live in the Global South generally are optimistic about the prospects for evangelicalism in their countries: 71% expect that five years from now the state of evangelicalism in their countries will be better than it is today. But those who live in the Global North expect that the state of evangelicalism in their countries will either stay about the same (21%) or worsen (33%) over the next five years.
National Day of Prayer
A federal appeals court recently overturned a lower court ruling that had declared the National Day of Prayer to be unconstitutional. The day of prayer, established by Congress in 1952, occurs annually on the first Thursday in May, which this year falls on May 5.
Religion and the Courts: The Pillars of Church-State Law
Churches in Court
Whenever churches or religious organizations find themselves involved in civil litigation, courts first must determine whether the First Amendment’s religion clauses bestow a unique legal status on religious organizations that puts some of their decisions and actions beyond the reach of civil laws.
Resources on the Future of the Global Muslim Population
Explore the Future of the Global Muslim Population report and related resources.
Religion in the News: Islam Was No. 1 Topic in 2010
Events and controversies related to Islam dominated U.S. press coverage of religion in 2010, bumping the Catholic Church from the top spot, according to a new study by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism and the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.
The Tea Party and Religion
A new analysis by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life finds that Tea Party supporters tend to have conservative opinions not just about economic matters, but also about social issues such as abortion and same-sex marriage.
Resources on Islam and Christianity in Sub-Saharan Africa
Tolerance and Tension: Islam and Christianity in Sub-Saharan Africa, a 19-country survey by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life, reveals that the vast majority of people in many sub-Saharan African nations are deeply committed to Christianity or Islam, and yet many continue to practice elements of traditional African religions.
The Future of the Global Muslim Population
A new Pew Forum report on the size, distribution and growth of the global Muslim population finds that the world’s Muslim population is expected to increase by about 35% in the next 20 years, but it is expected to grow at a slower pace in the next two decades than it did in the previous two decades.