NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--Though many people insist global warming is real and man-made, Protestant pastors aren't entirely convinced, according to a new study from LifeWay Research.
The telephone survey of 1,002 randomly selected Protestant pastors, conducted in October 2008, discovered that pastors are evenly split about whether global warming is real and man-made. It also found that views of pastors vary widely by denomination, location and even the individual pastor's ideologies.
Asked to indicate their level of agreement with the statement, "I believe global warming is real and man-made," pastors split down the middle: 47 percent agree either strongly or somewhat, while 47 percent disagree either strongly or somewhat. The remainder indicate "don't know."
The differences of opinion, however, are seen more sharply when analyzed in relation to a pastor's denominational affiliation and geographic location. Fully 75 percent of pastors in mainline denominations agree global warming is real and man-made, but only 32 percent of pastors in evangelical denominations agree. Pastors in rural areas are less convinced than large-city pastors. Forty-three percent of rural pastors and 55 percent of large-city pastors agree. Pastors in the Eastern and Western United States are more persuaded, 60 percent and 53 percent, respectively, than pastors in the South (45 percent) and Midwest (40 percent).
When the pastors' personal beliefs are factored in, the differences grow even more pronounced. Among pastors who consider their political ideology liberal or very liberal, 93 percent agree that global warming is real and man-made, and 79 percent of self-perceived moderates agree. Read More