Religion in the United States - Role in Your Accounting Practice| |
While religion is personal and local, it is also a large component of life in the United States. In fact, freedom of religion is guaranteed in our constitution. The United States has the largest Christian and Protestant population in the world. And according to Gallup, 75% of Americans report praying often or sometimes. Judaism is the second largest religion in the US. The most religious states in the United States are southern states (Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, Arkansas, South Carolina, etc.) while the least religious states are New England (New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Vermont, Maine, etc.).
Depending upon which survey data, religion is "very important" to 49% of Americans. More than 150 million Americans are members of faith congregations. It's also big business. Twenty of the top 50 charities in the US are faith based, with a combined $45.3 billion in revenue. A report from Religious & Business Foundation found out that religion adds $1.2 trillion of goods and services are provided by religious organizations annually. Or said another way, religion is worth more than Google and Apple combined. Religious congregations - churches, synagogues, mosques, temples and chapels - of every denomination add $418 billion annually to the American economy.
While there is no official directory of congregations in the United States, Hartford Institute estimates there are 350,000 congregations in the United States. And the median size in the US has 75 participants in worship on weekend mornings.
The point of this article to illustrate how large faith is within the United States and encourage you to evaluate if this should become a larger part of your accounting practice. The above data and articles clearly illustrate how large faith is within the US and yet, most accountants avoid faith as a niche. While I understand that faith is like politics, it may play a larger role going forward if you give it more consideration.
Here are examples of accounting firms that have decided develop a faith-based specialty and Build Your Firm helped them design a niche website.