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Year in Review: Barna’s Top 10 Releases of 2019

Barna conducts tens of thousands of interviews every year, attempting to make sense of public opinion, cultural trends and religious identity. This year, our most-discussed research and reports were those that strengthened our profile of young adults—not just in the United States but in 25 countries around the globe—and had a particular focus on understanding the forces shaping the future of evangelism and discipleship. To wrap up 2019, we’ve compiled our 10 most popular releases of the year.

U.S. Adults See Evangelicals Through a Political Lens

While, according to Barna’s categorization, evangelicals only make up about 6 percent of the U.S. population, this religious group has assumed a unique place in national discourse. As the U.S. enters another heated election year, a new Barna report shows Americans seem to increasingly view evangelicals through a political lens, which leads to mixed feelings toward this religious group. Our research has developed a pronounced portrait of this Christian minority over the years, but for this study our aim was different. We set out to understand how the general public understands evangelicals.

What Is the Church’s Role in Racial Reconciliation?

This August, historians note, marks 400 years since slavery began in the United States. As our country nears this anniversary, many are taking time to reflect on the history of racial injustice in America and their responsibility in healing the wounds of inequality that have been inflicted on black Americans over the last four centuries. A new report, Where Do We Go from Here?, represents the first of several new Barna efforts to study race and the Church and assesses what practicing Christians feel should be done to repair the damage.

U.S. Adults Believe Hate Speech Has Increased—Mainly Online

Reported incidents of hate speech and hate crimes in the United States has risen dramatically in recent years. In light of this, Barna sought to explore personal opinions about or experiences with such interactions, attacks or crimes.

Half of Practicing Christians Say History of Slavery Still Impacts the U.S.

In recent years, there has been contentious debate about the injustices that black Americans still experience in their daily lives. In light of this, Barna set out to explore issues related to the treatment of black Americans and other ethnic minorities in this new study on race and equality in America.

Two-Thirds of Americans Have Multigenerational Friendships

Barna's research shows that, when it comes to friendship, Americans tend to surround themselves with people who look, think and act similarly. However, a new study shows that intergenerational friendships can take many forms, and a majority of Americans reports engaging in them.

Technology & Christmas: Tips for Monitoring Devices

When families come together for Christmas, they bring their values and routines with them as well. Increasingly those are shaped by a relationship to technology. Drawing from Andy Crouch’s recent book, The Tech-Wise Family (a 2018 Christianity Today Book Award recipient), we've compiled some key statistics and helpful tips to make yours a tech-wise home for the holidays.

1 in 4 Americans Cast Ballots Outside Party Lines in Midterms

Brand new research from Barna explores the flexibility of U.S. voters in a fraught political climate. The data reveals that only a minority of Americans report having changed their minds about their political affiliation at some point. However, among people who have switched parties, many have made the shift recently.

Volunteerism in America: The Top 10 Cities

Over the years, Barna has been tracking the religious views, attitudes and lifestyles among American adults and publishing this data in our Cities reports. In this infographic, we list the top 10 American cities where respondents are most likely to volunteer for a non-profit organization on a weekly basis.

What Motivates Christians to Give?

While many Americans rush for Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals and gear up for Christmas shopping, #GivingTuesday is a chance to pause and consider donating money to organizations and charities. Over the years, Barna research has revealed much about the giving habits and motivations of U.S. adults, particularly churchgoers and Christians.

Around the Thanksgiving Table: The Data Behind Those Tense Conversations

Getting together over the holidays can be almost notoriously fraught. Over the years, Barna’s research has covered some of the delicate or even difficult dynamics that might exist across generations or simply across the dinner table.

Our Present Political Moment, in Numbers

Americans head to the polls today for the 2018 midterm elections. In the midst of this unprecedented and contentious season, Barna has been tracking key issues and trends related to the United States’ political climate. In this article, we’ve compiled highlights from Barna’s recent studies that may help provide context—or prompt more questions—about our present political moment.

U.S. Adults Have Few Friends—and They’re Mostly Alike

Barna has been examining the role of friendships over the years and, like other researchers, finds signs of a loneliness epidemic. Drawing from a number of recent studies of all adults, as well as Gen Z and pastors, we look at the state of friendship in the U.S.

Generous People Are Rarely Single-Issue Donors

In light of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty on October 17, this infographic looks at the correlation between donating to causes aimed at helping the world’s poor and other acts of engagement, service and compassion—in other words, the more you care, the more you care.

Does Mercy Influence Christians’ Actions?

Breaking the cycle of incivility in American public discourse will require a reset—and a radical reorientation toward virtues like forgiveness and kindness. Along these lines, Barna conducted a study on how U.S. Christians and pastors connect to biblical concepts of mercy, justice and truth. This new infographic explores whether these virtues impact their behavior.

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