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Sunday, November 13, 2011
Study Examines the State of Faith in Hawaii
By News Release @ 3:11 PM :: 5700 Views :: Energy, Environment

Hawaiian Islands Ministries Exclusive: The State of Faith in Hawaii

From HIM Online

A revealing study of faith in Hawaii commissioned by HIM and conducted by the Barna Group.

This first-time ever research was based on a statistical survey of Hawaii residents and Hawaii clergy to capture prevailing faith-related attitudes, perceptions and practices in Hawaii today. The study measured beliefs, behaviors, community influence, and more. It is a powerful mirror for the Church in Hawaii, giving us a more accurate view of what we look like from the inside and out — by believers and those who believe differently, or not at all. Even more, the study can guide churches and leaders in responding with greater understanding to those we minister to. HIM is making these findings available to the public through a limited edition monograph. 

Order a copy for yourself, your church/organization by calling the HIM office at 808-988-9777 or download an order form and submit along with payment to: Hawaiian Islands Ministries, PO Box 777, Honolulu, HI 96808. 

This study was commissioned by Hawaiian Islands Ministries (HIM), conducted by The Barna Group, and funded by HIM along with several churches and community partners.

The Barna Group is a visionary research and resource company located in Ventura, California and widely considered to be a leading research organization focused on the intersection of faith and culture. It offers customized research, resources and training to serve churches, non-profits, businesses and leaders in order to help facilitate transformation in organizations, communities and individuals.

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Star-Adv: Survey provides a glimpse of religion in Hawaii -- what the church offers and how it's perceived

Many points of interest to the general public, complimentary to churches and otherwise, are in the report, including:

  • Values: Whether or not they're religious, the Hawaii respondents to the survey overwhelmingly ranked "family" first among their concerns, with "health" listed not far behind.
  • Social service: Among nonmembers as well as regular parishioners, Hawaii residents seem aware of the various works churches do in the community, everything from preschools to addictions counseling.
  • Perceptions: A small majority, 55 percent, give the church "very favorable" ratings, significantly below the 71 percent in that category in mainland averages.
  • Practice: Only about one-third, 34 percent, say they attend church weekly, compared to 52 percent on the mainland as a whole. But 76 percent of the Hawaii worshippers say they prayed in the past week (20-minute phone interviews of 1,008 residents were conducted in February).
  • Denominational loyalty: 34 percent said they're Protestant, 24 say Catholic.
  • Orthodoxy: Hawaii's churchgoers and believers in general tend to be a little less "entrenched," according to the study's conclusions. Fewer following the orthodox practices of their mainland counterparts. For example, only 45 percent say they belong to a church, higher than the national norm, and there's less emphasis on Bible study here.

Then there are the "notional Christians," who ascribe to none of the listed points but still say they're Christian: They're 43 percent, according to the survey. On that score, Hawaii matches mainland trends.

"And then the agnostics, it's higher here than on the mainland," he added. "We have 11 percent agnostic or atheist, and the mainland is 7 percent."

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