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The Nation

January 03, 1988

Seven in 10 of U.S. adults (69%) say they are members of a church or synagogue, as determined by the 1987 Gallup audit. The 1987 figure matches the percentage found in 1986. The highest figure in the half-century trend occurred in 1947, when 76% said they were church or synagogue members. The lowest percentage was recorded in 1982, when 67% claimed membership. In the 1987 audit, as in past years, a higher proportion of women (75%) than men (63%) reported membership. Education does not appear to be a major factor in church or synagogue membership, but sharp differences are found by region with Southerners more likely and Westerners less likely to be members. Membership also differs by race, with 69% of whites compared with 85% of blacks claiming church membership.

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