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Discussing religion, spirituality and values. Amy Umble is the religion reporter for The Free Lance-Star. You can email her at
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Worship and the Recession

As the economy started to slide, religion reporters jumped on a way to tie the recession to faith. Many theologians speculated that attendance at worship services would increase as the economy plummeted. It made sense: People would turn to their faith in time of fear. But statistics didn’t bear that out.  In fact, as the economy first dipped, worship attendance also dipped slightly. And now, as consumer confidence is rising, so is worship attendance. At least, that’s what a Gallup poll on self-reported attendance shows.

From the press release:

Such correlations do not prove causality, and it is possible that despite the more positive economic confidence, other economic realities such as unemployment could be related to the increase in church attendance, Still, these particular population-level data do little to directly support the theory that people seek out the solace of religion, as measured in religious service participation, when economic times turn tough.

What about you? Where do you turn for solace when times get tough?