Gallup poll finds decline in Bible reading

Posted: Friday, November 03, 2000

PRINCETON, N.J. (AP) -- Americans who read the Bible at least occasionally have dropped from 73 percent in the 1980s to 59 percent in an October Gallup poll. Those saying they read the Bible weekly or more often dropped only slightly, from 40 percent in 1990 to 37 percent.

Despite the slide in actual readership, Gallup reported 65 percent of Americans still say the Bible ''answers all or most of the basic questions of life.''

Fourteen percent of Americans reported participation in a Bible study group.

Among Republicans, 47 percent said they're weekly readers compared with 32 percent for Democrats. Women and nonwhites reported more frequent reading rates than other Americans.

Respondents' favorite Bible books, in order: Psalms, Genesis, Matthew, John, Revelation and Proverbs.

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