COVID-19 has put everyone through the ringer, and we’ve all turned to different things to help us cope. Maybe you’ve picked up a new hobby, or tried to read more or bought a Peloton. Some of us, not saying who, may have finally bought Zelda: Breath the Wild, even though we don’t usually like video games but were just curious to see what all the fuss is about and now just can’t stop exploring the Kingdom of Hyrule and solving its little mysteries. Again, we could be talking about anyone here. The point is, everyone is being shaped in some way by this pandemic. And for many Americans, the pandemic is shaping their faith …for the better.
About 28 percent of Americans say their faith has been strengthened during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the same amount say they think the faith of others in their country has been strengthened as well. That’s the highest number of any nation surveyed by Pew Research, which asked people in 14 countries how their religious beliefs had been impacted by pandemic. Spain came in second, with 16 percent of respondents saying their faith had grown in this season, and Italy in third with 15 percent.
It’s not clear why the U.S.’ response was so markedly different from every other country surveyed. In the U.K, just 10 percent thought their faith had increased, the same numbers as South Korea, France and Australia. In Canada, just 13 percent agreed. At the bottom of the list are countries like Germany, Sweden, Denmark and Japan, all with less than five percent.