Laying Hands Upon The Faithful (and Available): Study Finds 80 Percent of Unmarried Evangelical Young Adults Have Pre-Marital Sex

A new study from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy has identified an area of young adults who have been overlooked by prior campaigns: young evangelicals. The study found 80 percent of unmarried evangelical young adults have had sex. That is virtually the same (8 percent below) the national average. With a campaign infused with religiosity this year and all of the talk of “real America” versus urban America, the study challenges stereotypes.

The article below says that “Studies have not found that abstinence-only programs cut pregnancy rates, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), or even the age when sexual activity begins.”

However, last year, a study indicated some success from these programs. Here is what the Washington Post reported:

Only about a third of sixth- and seventh-graders who completed an abstinence-focused program started having sex within the next two years, researchers found. Nearly half of the students who attended other classes, including ones that combined information about abstinence and contraception, became sexually active.

Perish the thought that we could have a substantive debate on this question, but it would make for an interesting exchange.

Source: Think Progress

59 thoughts on “Laying Hands Upon The Faithful (and Available): Study Finds 80 Percent of Unmarried Evangelical Young Adults Have Pre-Marital Sex”

  1. True story, FWIH:

    The Billy Graham Crusade came to the Big City. On teen-night, I and other teens who attended the baptist church in my small town were bused to the big event. (I wasn’t feeling well, but went because it knocked $10 off summer camp fee). Baptist churches in all the surrounding towns bused their teens to the Crusade (as I recall, they all used public school buses).

    Well, I got to feeling bad during the service and went to lay down in the bus. Lo and behold, a fellow teen from my church was in the bus having carnal with a teen from one of the other small towns. After our initial surprise and exchange of pleasantries, I moved to the back of the bus and laid myself down to sleep while the other two continued to get to know each other.

    Whenever i hear the word “chutzpah,” I think of those two.

  2. Jo:

    “Mespo, What statistics do you use to support your suspicion?”


    I thought most educated folks knew the South is the epicenter for crime, teen pregnancy, poor education, and most other social ills. Other areas of the US aren’t perfect but compared to our Bible Belt cousins, they are positively halo-clad. Here’s some crime stats to get you going from Sam Harris’ “Letter to a Christian Nation.”

    “Of the twenty-five cities with the lowest rates of violent crime, 62 percent are in “blue” states and 38 percent are in “red” states. Of the twenty-five most dangerous cities, 76 percent are in red states, 24 percent in blue states. In fact, three of the five most dangerous cities in the United States are in the pious state of Texas. The twelve states with the highest rate of burglary are red. Twenty-four of the twenty-nine states with the highest rate of theft are red. Of the twenty-two states with the highest rates of murder, seventeen are red.”

    Here’s the bottom of the State Enlightment Rankings which takes into account SAT scores, infant mortality, prisoners per 100,000 pop, births out of wedlock, gonorrhea rate, and 7 other criteria:

    42 NEVADA 437
    43 TENNESSEE 441
    44 GEORGIA 446
    45 LOUISIANA 449
    47 ALABAMA 458
    48 FLORIDA 467
    49 MISSISSIPPI 495

    See a pattern yet? And this from someone who lives in the semi-southern Commonwealth of Virginia (We’re #24. Yippee!). We can see across the southern boundary and “it ain’t pretty” as our Southern cousins might say. Slurs? Maybe, but lots of facts and experience to go with it.

  3. Oro Lee, Amen, protect us all from the Southern Baptists. And may I add the Missionary Baptists, Primative Baptists and…………

    (Full disclosure I was raised Missionary Baptist….. but I outgrew it)

  4. Elaine,

    I read something recently that said something like this: “Show me how you spend your money and I’ll show you where your God is at.”…..

  5. Jo,

    Welcome to the ranks of AARPO!

    Ignore those emails from “that other organization.” You’re as young as you feel…or is it what you feel?



    I bet I know what your next comment will be!

  6. AY,

    The capital “G” denotes the one and only true God. Of course, those who believe in God believe that THEIR god is THE one and only true God.

  7. The 8% difference in the rate of premarital sex between Evangelicals and general population is probably explained by the fact that Evangelicals marry earlier so that they can have sex (another result of Abstinence campaigns in addition to higher rates of STD’s among sexually active Evangelical teens), which partly explains why Evangelicals (at least, the SBC) have higher rates of divorce than the general population.

    Just as much sex with more unwanted pregnancies, more STDs, and more divorces — God save ’em, or is it God save us from ’em.

  8. Elaine, You can sign me up. Just dont send mail like aarp does all the time.. Its always addressed …….Hey Jo you’re old!

  9. angrymanspeaks,

    I am of an age where I could be a member of AARP–but I’m not. Instead…I’ve decided to start my own organization of angry elders who are fed up with Washington, our current politicians, Wall Street, and the way our country is being run. My organization is AARPO–which stands for “Aged And Really Pissed Off.”

    P.S. You can come join us any time you feel the urge.



  10. You know, people are often discussing why sports figures always want to bring God into their victory speeches but never into their comments on a loss. I want to know why people so often bring God into their successful orgasms, but never mention Him in their misfires.

  11. AY,

    “That was just wrong, wrong, wrong… Thank god I am I looking to replace this laptop…..

    “Coffee all over….’

    I hate to play teacher–but shouldn’t that be god with a capital “G”?


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