By Aaron Earls
Once home to theologian Jonathan Edwards and a birthplace of the Great Awakening revival, Massachusetts now contains some of the least Christian cities in America.
Research from Barna ranks 100 American metro areas by the percentage of the population it classifies as “post-Christian.” Boston and New Bedford, Massachusetts, are both in the top five.
To be considered post-Christian by Barna, a person had to meet at least nine qualifications, including things like not believing in God, having not prayed or read the Bible in the last week, and having never made a commitment to Jesus.
Counting the two Massachusetts areas, eight of the top 10 cities on the post-Christian list are in New England.
Here are the top 10 with the percentage of residents who are classified as post-Christian.
- Portland/Auburn, Maine (57%)
- Boston, Massachusetts/Manchester, New Hampshire (56%)
- Albany/Schenectady/Troy, New York (54%)
- Providence, Rhode Island/New Bedford, Massachusetts (53%)
- Burlington, Vermont/Plattsburgh, New York (53%)
- Hartford/New Haven, Connecticut (52%)
- New York, New York (51%)
- San Francisco/Oakland/San Jose, California (50%)
- Seattle/Tacoma, Washington (50%)
- Buffalo, New York (50%)
Seven of the top 10 post-Christian cities are in the bottom 10 of most Bible-minded, while five are part of the 10 most unchurched cities.
Three metro areas—San Francisco, Boston, and Albany, New York—rank in the top 10 of most post-Christian and most unchurched and in the bottom 10 of most Bible-minded.
On the other side, Chattanooga, Tennessee, and Birmingham, Alabama, are the two cities among the 10 least post-Christian cities that are also among the top 10 most churched and 10 most Bible-minded cities.
AARON EARLS (@WardrobeDoor) is online editor of Facts & Trends.