Stone cites the seminal work of Raphael Franck and Laurence Iannaccone on this point, who meticulously tracked religious behavior over time in their own work. According to Franck and Iannaccone, “higher educational attainment did not predict lower religiosity: More and less educated people are similarly religious.” Nor did they “find that industrialized, urban life reduces religiosity: A more urban and industrialized population was associated with greater religiosity.” The link between intellectual progression/modernization and secularization is non-existent. …
It turns out that religiosity is usually determined very early in life. All the data suggest that, by and large, kids brought up in religious households stay religious and kids who aren’t, don’t. Consequently, childhood religiosity has been, and remains, the most important indicator of America’s religious trajectory. The story of religious decline in America is not the story of adults consciously rejecting the faith of their forefathers: It’s the story of each generation receiving a more secular upbringing than the generation preceding it. What accounts for this secularization of childhood over time? Taxpayer dollars.Cameron Hilditch, “Why American Children Stopped Believing in God” at National Review
One persons’s (News) childhood recollection of Christmas in the mid-1950s: In a very cold prairie farmhouse in Canada at a clan gathering, a bunch of little girls were huddled under blankets near the stove* and engaged in a fierce debate: Are angels boys or girls?
One uncle, considered an authority, said that angels were definitely boys. But that didn’t seem right, considering that angels wore dresses and crowns and such… We fell asleep before settling the debate. But people who have ever been in such a debate are probably more likely to be religious later in life.
- The boys who were those girls’ cousins had to sleep in a colder part of the house, to steel their mettle.