In the United States, there is a Muslim community number 3.3 million persons. So said a recent estimate published by the Pew Research Center. According to Pew, 1.8% of Americans are Jews, 1.0% are Muslims, and 0.7% are Hindus. At their current rate of demographic growth, which is bolstered by immigration and a high birthrate, the number of Muslims in the country is expected to rise to 2.1% of the population by 2050. This would be equal to 8.1 million. Currently, there are approximately 312 million residents of the U.S. The Pew estimate found that there are fewer Muslims of all ages in the U.S. than there are Jews by religion (5.7 million) but more than there are Hindus (2.1 million) and many more than there are Sikhs.
 
The Pew report said “There has been little net change in the size of the American Muslim population in recent years due to conversion,” according to the Pew Research Center. “About one-in-five American Muslim adults were raised in a different faith or none at all. At the same time, a similar number of people who were raised Muslim no longer identify with the faith.”
 
Nihad Awad of the Council on American-Islamic Relations
 
Since the U.S. Census does not enumerate residents according to religious faith, the Pew Center used demographic projections to come up with the report. Writing about the report was Besheer Muhammad of Pew: “Our new estimate of Muslims and other faiths is based on a demographic projection that models growth in the American Muslim population since our 2011 estimate and includes both adults and children. The projection uses data on age, fertility, mortality, migration and religious switching drawn from multiple sources, including the 2011 survey of Muslim Americans.”
 
Muhammad wrote, “In some cities Muslims comprise significantly more than 1% of the community. And even at the state level Muslims are not evenly distributed: Certain states, such as New Jersey, have two or three times as many Muslim adults per capita as the national average.”
 
In 2015, Pew released a report on the changing religious landscape of the United States and noted that it is no longer a majority Protestant nation. In its first Religious Landscape Study, Pew noted in 2007 that more than half of the adults in the U.S. (51.3%) identified as Protestants. By comparison, that figure dropped to 46.5% of adults in 2015. The most pronounced decline in numbers has been noted in the mainline Protestant traditions, such as the Episcopal Church of the USA, United Methodist Church, and the Evangelical Lutheran Church. According to Pew research, the share of adults belonging to mainline churches dropped from 18.1% in 2007 to 14.7% in 2014. This is similar to the drop seen among U.S. Catholics, whose share of the population declined from 23.9% to 20.8% during the same seven-year period.


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Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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