Trend Analysis Reports
Hispanics Leaving Catholicism, But Not Becoming Protestants
During the 1990s percentage of Hispanics in the U.S. who identify themselves as Catholics dropped from 66% to 57% of the total ethnic group. During the same decade Pentecostals grew from 3% to 4% of Hispanics–a growth rate of about 3.3% per year. But, relatively few people changed their affiliation from Catholic to Pentecostal.
The fastest-growing category among Hispanics are those who identify with no religion. This group more than doubled from 6% in 1990 to 13% a decade later. The percentage of Hispanics who report that they are Protestants of one kind or another stayed the same at about one quarter of the total.
It is not accurate to call the Hispanics who report no religious affiliation "unbelievers," says Ariela Keysar, lead author for the study which surfaced these data. About 85% of those who report no religion believe that God exists and 76% believe in miracles. Young people and men are those most likely to be unchurched, a pattern similar to other ethnic groups in the U.S.
Trend Analysis Report (2000) Source: American Religious Identification Survey (ARIS), City University of New York.