I wanted to share some interesting maps and charts from the book Sociology 13th Edition by John J. Macionis. As I mentioned in one of my previous posts, this book has a great review of religions around the world. I found these maps very interesting since it shows various religious concentrations throughout the country.
Take a look at this map first. This shows where most religions congregate in the country. The purple is more than 75%, the tan is 50% to 75%, the light blue is 35% to 50%, and the darker blue is less than 35%.
See any interesting results? The Midwest down to the south is a pretty religious area. Texas looks to be very religious. Check out the east and west coasts. There are some very low religious areas here. Gotta love Washington and Oregon, hardly any religion at all. I think the most obvious is Utah. It is the most religious state in the entire country.
Now take a look at the next map. The colors here break out the actual different religious sects, which happen to all be Christian. Red is Baptist, Light blue is Catholic, Tan is Non-denominational Christian, Dark blue is Latter-Day Saint, Brown is Lutheran, and Green is Methodist.
I find this map fascinating. First of all, there are maybe two tiny spots for Methodist. Lots of light blue scattered around for Catholics. New England, southern California, and southern Texas are very Catholic. I guess North Dakota and Minnesota love their Lutherans up there. Of course, we have the Bible belt completely covered by the Baptists. I cannot tell you how many Baptists churches I have seen in those areas, too many to count!
Once again, let us look at Utah. The entire state is dark blue and the dark blue has seeped into Idaho, Wyoming, Nevada, and Arizona. Doesn't this just enforce the idea that the Mormon Church is a Utah church? They want to say that they are a worldwide religion, but look; they do not have hardly any numbers outside of Utah. I would be curious to see what a worldwide map would look like. Various insignificant specks of dark blue scattered about?
This final chart shows percentages of religions in the United States. Latter-Day Saint does not even show up, it is probably in the 19.4% of All others or no denomination. I wonder if the 16.5% of No religious preference includes atheists and agnostics.
Here is the source for all maps and charts.
Macionis, John J. 2010. Sociology 13th Edition. Page 503. Publisher: Pearson.
Well, there you have it. I hope you enjoyed these maps as much as I did. I find it very telling that the Mormon Church is so concentrated into one area of the United States while the rest of the country and world dismisses it as almost inconsequential.