Spiritual But Not Religious? More and More People See Themselves As Such, and It’s Not Hard to See Why

Pastor Paul J Bern
5 min readJul 31, 2022

Spiritual, Not Religious: The Message of the Social Gospel Grows As More Become Disenchanted With Traditional Religion

Still, Believers in a Higher Power Keep Searching for Answers

by Pastor Paul J. Bern

Jesus is my one and only Savior

So-called “experts” call them “unaffiliated,” as in a recent Pew poll, or “nones” — or even just ‘not very religious.’ A 2013 poll by the Public Religion Research Institute divided these groups further into “unattached,” “atheists”, “agnostics,” and “seculars.” That was nine years ago. One thing is for sure; this ever-growing cohort of non-Church Americans made up, at 23 percent, the single largest segment of Barack Obama’s “religious coalition” that helped him win reelection in 2012. As a result of this, the unaffiliated clearly had their moment. Media analysis, however, did not go very deep — there was a story that went beyond these names and numbers.

My Intense Desire to Be a Good Servant to You All

I have began to understand as time rolls along who these current crop of unaffiliated people are, what they believe in, and who or what inspires them. This is the group I am targeting to spread my good news about the Gospel of Jesus Christ, but it is outside of the church environment. Yet we have precious little historical understanding of this critical and rapidly growing demographic. What are their roots? What religious, cultural, economic, demographic, and political processes shaped their sensibilities, habits, and makeup? In order to understand these still-believing but nonreligious, unaffiliated, agnostic believers, we need to understand that much of the religious dynamism in the United States happens outside the church walls. Moreover, this has been ongoing for quite some time now. It’s time we woke up and smelled the coffee.

In Order to be Close to God, Invite Jesus to Live Within Your Heart

The “rise of the non-religious believers” is but the latest phase in the long transformation of religion into what we now commonly call “spirituality.” In my case and that of my peers, it is…

Pastor Paul J Bern

Rev. Paul J. Bern is a Web pastor and blogger on The Social Gospel Blog on Medium, Wordpress and others. Longtime Atlanta Ga. resident; stroke survivor, coach