PRRI

Perceptions of churches regarding LGBTQ people

Three in four worshipers (75%) agree that their church is generally welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people. Large majorities of all religious groups agree, including 81% of white Protestants, 80% of black Protestants, 74% of white evangelical Protestants, 74% of other Protestants of color, 73% of other Christians, 72% white Catholics and 64% Hispanic Catholics. There are no substantial partisan differences either, as 76% of Republicans, 75% of Independents, and 75% of Democrats agree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people.

There are no substantial differences in race or education, but younger practitioners are less likely than older ones to agree. Two-thirds of 18-29 year olds (68%) agree their church is welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people, compared to 74% of 30-49 year olds, 74% of 50-64 year olds and 79 year olds. % of people aged 65 and over.

At the same time, the faithful are less convinced that not welcoming LGBTQ+ people could be negative. About four in ten (39%) agree that churches alienate adults in their 20s and 30s when they do not accept and welcome LGBTQ+ people, while 55% disagree that alienation is a risk. A slim majority of mainstream white Protestants (52%) agree that not accepting LGBTQ+ people alienates young adults, as do 45% of black Protestants and 44% of white Catholics, 39% of Hispanic Catholics and 37 % of other Christians. Other Protestants of Color (31%) and Evangelical White Protestants (30%) are the least likely to agree it could alienate people in their 20s and 30s.

There are also partisan divisions on this question, since only 25% of Republicans agree, against 44% of independents and 56% of Democrats.

Interestingly, there is no substantial age gap on this question, as people aged 18-29 (41%), 30-49 (38%), 50-64 ( 42%) and 65+ (38%) are all similarly likely to agree that churches alienate adults in their 20s and 30s when they do not accept and welcome people LGBTQ+. There is also no significant difference based on the perception of their own church: among those who agree that their church is welcoming and kind to LGBTQ+ people, 41% agree that churches alienate young adults if they are not not welcoming, compared to 40% of those who disagree that their church is welcoming and kind to LGBTQ+ people.

What worshipers want to see in church regarding LGBTQ issues

I prefer not to discuss gender and sexuality issues

Although most say they welcome LGBTQ+ people into their church, worshipers are also split on whether they’d rather attend a church that doesn’t discuss gender and sexuality issues, with 48% agreeing and 48% disagree with the statement. The majority of white Catholics (59%), Hispanic Catholics (53%) and white mainline Protestants (52%) agree that they would rather attend churches that do not discuss these issues. Just under half of other Christians (48%) and white evangelical Protestants (45%) agree, compared to less than four in ten other Protestants of color (38%) and Black Protestants (37%).

A majority of Republicans (52%) and half of independents (50%) agree they would rather attend a church that does not discuss gender and sexuality issues, while 41% of Democrats agree.

White (51%) worshipers are more likely than Black (39%) and Hispanic (45%) worshipers to agree with this statement. White worshipers with a four-year college degree or higher (45%) are less likely than those without a four-year college degree (54%) to agree that they would prefer to attend a church that does not discuss gender and sexuality issues. There are no big age differences on this issue.

Those who agree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people, are just as likely as those who disagree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone agree that they would rather attend a church that does not discuss gender and sexuality issues (50% vs. 46%).

More LGBTQ People in Church Leadership

Most Christians who attend church at least a few times a year are not particularly interested in seeing more LGBTQ+ people leading their church, as only 21% agree they would like to see this, while 72% disagree. Hispanic Catholics (39%) are more likely than any other group to agree that they wish their church had more LGBTQ+ people in leadership positions. Three in ten white Protestants (30%) and about one in four white Catholics (25%), other Christians (24%) and black Protestants (23%) agree. Only about another in ten Protestants of Color (13%) and Evangelical White Protestants (10%) agree that they wish their church had more LGBTQ+ people in the leadership.

There are also considerable partisan divisions, with 39% of Democrats agreeing they would like to see more LGBTQ+ people leading their church, compared to 23% of independents and 9% of Republicans.

Hispanic worshipers (30%) and black worshipers (24%) are more likely to agree with this statement than white worshipers (19%). White congregants with a four-year college degree or higher (26%) are more likely than those without a four-year college degree (15%) to agree that they want their church to have more LGBTQ+ people in leadership positions.

Young practitioners, particularly those aged 18-29 (33%), are more likely than practitioners aged 30-49 (22%), 50-64 (21%) and 65+ (17%) agree that they wish their church had more LGBTQ+ people in leadership positions.

Those who agree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people, are just as likely as those who disagree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone to agree that they would like their church to have more LGBTQ+ people in leadership positions (23% vs. .24%).

More talk about transgender rights?

Most congregants also don’t necessarily want their church to talk more about transgender rights. Less than one in five (18%) agree, while 78% disagree, that they want their church to talk more about transgender rights. Again, Hispanic Catholics (33%) are the most likely of these religious groups to agree with the statement, while 22% of Black Protestants, 21% of other Christians, 19% of White Protestants, 17% of white Catholics and 15% of other Protestants of color agree. Only 10% of white evangelical Protestants want their church to talk more about transgender issues.

Three in ten Democrats (31%) agree they would like to see their church talk more about transgender issues, compared to 20% of independents and just 7% of Republicans.

Hispanic (25%) and Black (24%) followers are more likely than White (14%) followers to agree that they would like this discussion. White worshipers with a four-year college degree or higher (18%) are more likely than those without a four-year college degree (11%) to agree that they would like their church to talk more about transgender issues.

Young followers, especially those aged 18-29 (30%), are more likely than followers aged 30-49 (18%), 50-64 (15%) and 65+ (14%) agree that they want their church to talk more about transgender rights.

Those who agree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone, including LGBTQ+ people, are just as likely as those who disagree that their church is welcoming and kind to everyone to agree that they would like their church to talk more about transgender issues (18% vs. 21%).

About sample

These results come from 2,374 faithful Christians who attend services, other than weddings and funerals, at least a few times a year. The religious composition of the sample is 27% White Evangelical Protestant, 16% White Mainstream Protestant, 16% White Catholic, 13% Black Protestant, 10% Hispanic Catholic, 6% Hispanic Protestant , 4% other colored Protestants, 4% latter. saint of the day, 3% Jehovah’s Witnesses, 2% other Catholics of color and less than 1% Orthodox Christians. Due to sample sizes, the categories reported are: White Evangelical Protestant, White Primary Protestant, White Catholic, Black Protestant, Hispanic Catholic, Other Protestant of Color (including Hispanic Protestant), and Other Christian (including Other Catholic colored, Jehovah’s Witness, last-day saint and Orthodox).

Politically, 36% are Republicans, 28% are Democrats and 25% are independents.

This group resembles the nation as a whole in terms of education and race, but is somewhat older than the general population, with 28% aged 65 or older (vs. 22% overall) , 28% aged 50-64 (vs. 26% overall). ), 29% aged 30-49 (vs. 33% overall) and 15% aged 18-29 (vs. 19% overall).

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