Religious Diversity in the U.S.

By Jessie and Kassie

Public school and prayer

Religion, in many ways, has become an almost subtle undertone in the daily lives of Americans with public prayer often taking a backseat to the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights. While the U.S. remains the most religiously diverse country across the world,how much of that diversity is actually allowed to be practiced? The public doesn't really seem to approve of prayer in school or at school activities, so really how diverse is the U.S? Countries which prohibit school prayer often differ in their reasons for doing so: In the United States, school prayer is proscribed in accordance with the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, which provides the foundation for the separation of the church and state. In Canada, school prayer is disallowed under the concept of Freedom of conscience as outlined in the Canadian Charter on Rights & Fundamental Freedoms. Simultaneously, school prayer is disallowed in France as a byproduct of its status as a laicist, religiously neutral, nation. Countries that allow school and/or state-sponsored prayer include Greece, Iran, Australia, Italy, and the U.K.


Tanenbaum was founded by Rabbi Tanenbaum’s widow, Dr. Georgette Bennett in late 1992. She, along with Judith Banki, continued Rananbaum's trajectory, and they spoke at conferences and wrote articles regarding inter-religious issues. Soon though, they took it farther and developed programs based around Conflict Resolution and the Workplace.

Their goal is basically to achieve religious tolerance in workplace environments, educational environments, and even health care. Throughout this, Judith Banki continued to write and speak on the topic, and it shaped the program known today as Interreligious Affairs.

Today, Tanenbaum's programs are leaders in their fields, creating useful tools and resources that help to successfully navigate a religiously diverse world.
Religious Diversity: The American Experience

Statistics on Religion in America

An extensive new survey by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life details statistics on religion in America and explores the shifts taking place in the U.S. religious landscape. Based on interviews with more than 35,000 Americans age 18 and older, the U.S. Religious Landscape Survey finds that religious affiliation in the U.S. is both very diverse.

More than one-quarter of American adults (28%) have left the faith in which they were raised in favor of another religion - or no religion at all. If there is change in affiliation from one type of Protestantism to another is included, 44% of adults have either switched religious affiliation, moved from being unaffiliated with any religion to being affiliated with a particular faith, or dropped any connection to a specific religious tradition altogether.