If you’re in church this summer, more than two-thirds of you say you’re hearing about at least one political issue during the weekly message. And about 14 percent say you’re hearing about specific presidential candidates.
Pew Research conducted a poll of churchgoers and found that politics and social issues, such as life, marriage and religious freedom, are among the favored topics of pastors as we head toward the November 2016 election.
“In all of the major religious traditions,” said John Green, professor of political science at the University of Akron, “there’s concern about defending religious liberty.”
Jessica Martinez is a senior researcher for Pew.
“The goal was to come up with a variety of different topics, including topics that seemed to be bubbling up throughout the campaign,” she said, “and get a measure on whether they’re coming up in people’s places of worship.”
Pew found four in 10 people said they had been encouraged to vote by their pastor.
“It could be interesting to ask these questions again later,” she said, “to see… if more people are encouraged to vote.”