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Seen in Passing

Items of interest from various sources of religious news and opinion, in print and on the web.

Christian Schools Shine During COVID. “In a recent survey of public school and Christian school parents, the Herzog Foundation found that parents of children who attended a Christian school were vastly more satisfied with their school experience. Christian parents reported their schools remained open even as nearby public options closed. While only 8 percent of public school parents could report that their schools never closed, a quarter of Christian school parents did. The survey found that during the pandemic, Christian school parents found it easier to manage their child’s time, communicate with teachers, manage their child’s assignments, and were better able to keep up their child’s morale than the parents of children in public schools. As a result, while just over half of public school parents reported being satisfied with their child’s education in 2020, fully 80 percent of Christian school parents were.” Graves, Todd. “Christian Schools Vastly Outperforming Public Schools During COVID-19, According to New Survey of Parents.” News., 27 Aug. 2021. Web. 22 Sep. 2021.

Among the Most Faithful Churchgoers Are . . . Nonmembers? Most are aware of the rapid decline in church membership in the U.S. in recent years, and this trend was confirmed by a Gallup report earlier this year. From the mid-30’s through 1990, a steady 70% of Americans were members of a church or synagogue, but the years since have seen a rapid downward trend. By 2020 church members had declined to 47%. However, among the other findings of the Gallup survey were some surprising nuggets of information. For example, among those respondents who are members of a church, nearly 20% don’t actually attend (once a year or less). Even more surprising, perhaps, are the 10% of nonmembers who faithfully attend worship services once a week or oftener! Burge, Ryan. “1 in 10 Non-Church Members Still Show Up Every Sunday.” News & Reporting., 24 Aug. 2021. Web. 23 Sep. 2021.

Curses Foiled Again. Dr. Robbie Love of Aston University in Birmingham, England, recently published surprising research indicating that swearing has declined in the UK by over 25% since the 1990s. Surveying a sample of sixteen curse words in common usage, the report found that far fewer of the rude words are being used in the UK, and now account for less than 1% of total spoken language. Another change — in the 90s, men swore 2-1/2 times more often than women, but now women swear almost as much as men. The research found that it’s mostly people in their 20’s who swear, and that the practice declines with age. N.a., “The use of swear words declines by more than a quarter in the UK since the 1990s.” Latest News., 20 Aug. 2021. Web. 23 Sep. 2021.