State of the

Research from American Bible Society and Barna Group

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The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted almost every aspect of American life including our physical wellbeing, our economic outlook and our religious lives. Learn more about how COVID-19 has changed Americans’ relationships with the Bible and the Church.
COVID-19 Brings Stress

COVID-19 has disrupted every aspect of life, including participation in church and engagement with the Bible. Bible-related searches online hit a five-year high, but there are troubling signs in American’s lives...

  • Scripture Engagement is under pressure, especially among women who shoulder the needs of childcare at home.
  • Americans of many faiths say COVID-19 has interfered with their ability to worship and serve God.
  • Stress and trauma are on the rise, while hope and flourishing are trending downward.
The Church is a Beacon of Hope

The Church is helping connect people to the Bible and its message of hope. When Americans gather in community with one another around the Bible the data show an increase in hope and human flourishing.

Chapters Included
  • The Bible in America: 2020 Trends
  • The Bible in a COVID-19 World
  • The Impact of Scripture Engagement
  • Scripture Engagement and Wellbeing
  • Scripture Engagement and Technology
  • Scripture Engagement and Discipleship
  • Scripture Engagement, Social Justice, and Political Identity
  • Scripture Engagement and the Military
  • NEW for December - 2020: A Year in Review

Coming Soon...
  • Look for State of the Bible 2021 in the new year


Image of David Kinnaman

"The major crises of 2020 point to the need for even more clarity on how the Bible supports people in every facet of human life. The research shows that reading and engaging the Bible connects to all kinds of good stuff in people's lives--flourishing in their emotions and mental health, their vocational pursuits, their generosity and financial wellbeing, their relationships with others, and their spirituality."

David Kinnaman

President of Barna Group
Author of the bestselling books Faith For Exiles, Good Faith, You Lost Me and unChristian

Nicole Martin

"Today, our nation is facing historic stresses, hurts, and struggles. Now more than ever, Americans are relying on the Church to help them find hope and healing through God's Word."

Rev. Dr. Nicole Martin

Executive Director of Trauma Healing
American Bible Society

Image of John Plake

"The COVID-19 pandemic has sparked a new interest in prayer and curiosity about the Bible, but real Scripture Engagement is under pressure. Women in America are feeling it the most as their hectic, shelter-in-place, homeschool mom, professional multi-tasker lives squeeze out time for the Bible."

John Farquhar Plake, Ph.D.

Director of Ministry Intelligence
American Bible Society

News and Information

View Past Reports

State of the Bible Past Reports
Teen State of the Bible
Millennials and the Bible

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