Who are the Latino “Nones”? Understanding Patterns of Latina/o Religious Disaffiliation

Aida Ramos , George Fox University
Christopher Ellison, University of Texas at San Antonio
Alejandro Gonzalez, University of Texas at San Antonio
John Bartkowski, University of Texas at San Antonio

Recent media treatments have suggested that the proportion of those who are religiously unaffiliated may be on the rise. For U.S. Latinos this development represents a significant change from the traditional dominance of Catholicism among most segments of the Latino/a population, and also runs counter to available information about the growth of Protestantism. Our work takes into account several classes of factors that may shape the propensities of Latinos/as to disengage from organized religion, including (1) religion of upbringing, (2) family and life cycle factors (gender, marital status, parenthood, age); (3) SES (educated secular subcultures and income); (4) national origin status; (5) network stability (nativity status, residential stability), (6) acculturation (identity salience); and (7) politics (political ideology, attitudes about role of religion in politics). Findings indicate that each set of factors is linked with the likelihood of religious non-affiliation among U.S. Latinos/as.

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 Presented in Session 9. Marriage, Family, Households, & Unions; Gender, Race, & Ethnicity