Though President Donald Trump has publicly identified as a Presbyterian and Protestant, and is often associated with evangelical leaders, there is a wide range of opinions among Americans about the details of his religious beliefs and practices, Pew Research Center says.
The polling agency reports that its research into Trump’s religion reveals that half of American adults say they’re either “not sure what his religion is (34 percent) or that he has no religion (16 percent),” while “just 33 percent say he’s Protestant.”
Overall, the report said, Americans “don’t think Trump is particularly religious.” Most say the president is “not too” (23 percent) or “not at all” (40 percent) religious. More than one-in-four (28 percent) say he’s “somewhat” religious, and less than one-in-ten – only 7 percent – say he’s “very religious,” according to the survey. Just more than a third (34 percent) express uncertainty about Trump’s specific religious affiliation.
The Pew report says Trump, a self-identified Presbyterian, is the ninth president to be affiliated with that Protestant faith group. A 2015 CNN report, published just over two months after Trump declared his candidacy, says that Trump attended First Presbyterian Church in the Jamaica neighborhood of New York’s Queens Borough. The report said he was confirmed there, according to a statement from the church, which was founded over 350 years ago.
Later, the report said, Trump attended Marble Collegiate Church in Manhattan, which was founded in 1628. Norman Vincent Peale, author of The Power of Positive Thinking, was pastor of the church for 52 years from 1932-1984. Peale died in late 1993.
Trump “had a longstanding history” with the church where “his parents were for years active members and one of his children was baptized,” according to a statement from the church quoted in the report. The statement acknowledged at the time that Trump was “not an active member.” And now, Pew says, “Trump does not regularly attend a Presbyterian church.”
He associates with leaders in a range of faith groups, Pew says, including Paula White, his spiritual adviser, who previously led a Pentecostal-leaning church. Others include Southern Baptist leader Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Church, Dallas.
Despite these and other public associations, Pew says that “fewer than half of Americans associate him with Christianity or, more specifically, Protestantism.”
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Source: Christian Headlines