Religion: Kicking the habit?

Historically-Catholic Ireland is one of nine Western nations whose citizens are allegedly choosing non-affiliation.

A new study says that religion is about to effectively die out in nine Western societies. The research by the University of Arizona and Northwestern University says census data from the nations show a steady rise in people claiming no religious affiliation.

The inclusion of Ireland, where the Catholic Church still holds powerful sway over many facets of social life, is perhaps the greatest surprise.

Richard Wiener of the Research Corporation for Scientific Advancement headed the research team. He said yesterday: “In a large number of modern, secular democracies, there’s been a trend that folk are identifying themselves as non-affiliated with religion.”

Such non-belief ranged from 40 percent of all those surveyed in The Netherlands to 60 percent in the Czech Republic.


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