Gays and personal faith

Religion has not always been kind to the gay community. Signs like the one that ATLAH Worldwide Missionary posted outside its church in Harlem, New York over many years captured perfectly the discrimination many LGBT people have faced in religious congregations. It is not hard to see why a significant number of people are leaving religion over these and other anti-gay policies, even among larger denominations.

LGBT adults in the U.S. are more likely to identify as non-religious than their non-LGBT counterparts, Gallup found in a recent survey. Forty-seven percent of LGBT adults say they are non-religious, compared to 30 percent of non-LGBT adults, and the difference only increases between LGBT women and non-LGBT women, which is 46 percent to 25 percent.

Gallup identified highly religious as those who say religion is an important part of their daily lives and attend religious services every week, while nonreligious Americans say the opposite. Moderately religious Americans are either those who attend services without feeling any real connection to religion or those who say religion is an important part of their lives, but do not attend religious services.

The Public Religion Research Institute published a study back in February that found that one-third of millennials who left religion did so due to “negative teachings” or “negative treatment” regarding the LGBT community in general.

LGBT issues, rather than faith, has played a major role in pushing people away from the church, PRRI stated in their findings. Gallup’s findings may suggest the same.

Twenty-nine percent of both LGBT and non-LGBT adults identify as moderately religious, and 11 percent of LGBT respondents and 12 percent of non-LGBT respondents attend religious services about once a month.

The LGBT community is split in half between those who say religious is important in their daily lives and those who say it is not.

In every age group, the percent of moderately religious individuals is roughly the same for LGBT and non-LGBT and that the divide between the two in the highly religious category decreases with age.

The percentages of LGBT and non-LGBT religious identification with Christian and Catholic denominations is most contrasted. The percentages among Mormon, Muslim and Jewish-identified LGBT and non-LGBT individuals is about the same.