Just in time for Ash Wednesday, research firm Gallup released its latest figures on church attendance across America, and once again, Maine is among the states with the lowest church turnout.
There have been a number of studies over the years showing Mainers’ statistical lack of religious conviction.
In 2012, we reported that the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies found Maine was the only state in which less than 30 percent of the people belong to a religious denomination or independent Christian church.
A previous Pew study found that less than 40 percent of Mainers pray daily, again the lowest percentage in the country.
Following those trends, this 2014 Gallup poll found that 20 percent of Mainers attend church weekly, less than all but one other state — Vermont, where 17 percent of the population attends church weekly.
In fact, the bottom four in terms of church turnout are all in New England, with New Hampshire at 20 percent and Massachusetts at 22 percent.
The highest turnout is in Utah, where the weekly church attendance is 51 percent. Gallup found that Mormons have the highest religious service attendance of any major U.S. religious group, and 59 percent of the population in Utah is Mormon.
Mississippi is second with 47 percent, followed by Alabama and Louisiana, tied at 46 percent.
For Maine, Gallup found that 14 percent of the population goes to church monthly, while 65 percent of the population goes rarely or never.
Gallup reports that, generally, higher religious participation numbers correlate to higher Republican party enrollment and higher “well-being” which is defined more explicitly here.
If you want to see the full Gallup release on its latest church attendance figures, click here.