Faith Surge after 911 Did Not Last
Dr. Michael L. Ford
30 August 2006

     The Barna Group recently reported a study made by
them showing despite an intense surge in religious
activity and expression in weeks following 9/11 the
faith of Americans is virtually no different today
compared to pre-attack conditions. After the attack
over half of Americans declared their faith helped
them get through the trying times. Some churches
experienced more than double their normal crowd on the
Sunday after the Twin Towers were brought down. But by
the time January 2002 rolled around, churchgoing was
back to pre-attack levels, proving how very shallow
most religious commitment is. Things like Bible
reading and prayer went by the wayside even more
     One of the things that interested me after the
attack were numerous reports of faith conversions.
Supposedly right after the attack Muslims picked up a
number of converts with the killing of unsuspecting
people. But Barna now says “Adherents to Islam account
for just one-half of 1% of the U.S. adult population.
Osama bin Laden’s objective of using the attacks to
spur conversion to Islam has not been realized.” So
the percentages did not change even though some
fearful sought to save themselves through conversion.
     In spite of the weak faith the statistics show a
lot of people are still fearful. Nearly two-thirds of
Americans (63%) described themselves as “concerned
about terrorist attacks.” Increases in evangelicals
and concern for the moral condition of the nation does
not grow out of those fears however. There is a trend
for some people to grow more spiritually aware as they
age, and America has an aging population. It seems
from my own look at the situation is that fear levels
among people have a lot to do with both vulnerability
(women over 40) and with those with much to lose.
     Some people blame churches and pastors for
failing to meet the issues at the time of 9/11. But
the real problem is that most people want to use God
as a “band aid” for their concerns, and have Him stay
out of their business the rest of the time. But “God
is either God of all, or not at all.” The shallowness
of hypocritic unbelief leaves people as unsecure in
spirit as outright atheism.

            Jonsquill Ministries

P. O. Box 752

Buchanan, Georgia 30113