The scientific connection between churchgoing and mental health

Despite the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic’s emotional toll, a new Gallup survey has found that people who attend Church services every week have better mental health than people who go around once a month or less often.

The study published December 2021 found that weekly churchgoers finished at the top among 14 subgroups on mental and emotional health, with 44 percent of weekly churchgoers rating their own mental or emotional wellbeing as “excellent.”

The poll was conducted among 815 individuals, 18 years and older, residing in all 50 states of America and the District of Columbia, during the course of the week beginning November 1 and ending November 16, 2021. 

Notably, weekly churchgoers saw a slight decrease from the 46 percent in 2020 who rated their mental and emotional health as “excellent.” Still, the 44 percent of weekly churchgoers ranked higher than every subgroup, including Americans who make more than $100,000 (41 percent). The 44 percent also ranked higher than Republicans (42 percent), Democrats (28 percent) and Independents (33 percent).

The Gallup report observed that the mental and emotional health of many in America remains at a 21-year low, driven by a COVID-19 pandemic that led to widespread lockdowns and job loss. In 2019, 43 percent of Americans rated their mental and emotional health as excellent.

At the 95% confidence level, the sampling error is 4 percentage points for findings based on this sample of national adults.

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