For the believers in this world, it is very easy to see World War II as a spiritual conflict waged against the righteous by the evil forces of darkness. The atheist Nazis were truly having their way with the lukewarm Christians who filled the ranks of the European armies - up until the arrival of a particular North American army whose motto is "In God We Trust". Even to this day, the U.S. Military holds the record as having built more churches than any other institution (every military installation had one). This article reports that the U.S.Army did not simply deliver weaponry to our Chinese allies, they delivered millions of Bibles, too.
During the course of the Second World War, over 12,000 Protestant ministers, Catholic priests, and Jewish rabbis left the safety of home to join the Chaplain Corps - yet this short article explains that in August of 1941 there were only 994 Protestants, 318 Catholics and 18 Rabbis enrolled in the Chaplaincy. Five months later, with the Pearl Harbor attack, these numbers would begin their climb. The article was written to mark the introduction of the prefabricated chapels that the military would be adding to each of the camps that would soon be dotting the American landscape.
Here is a wonderful photo-essay that depicts the lives of one of the most pious communities in the United States: the Mennonites of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania:
"The Biblical statement that God wished to 'purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works' [Titus 2:14] is followed literally by the Amish. They do everything possible to ensure their goodness and to make themselves different from ordinary men."
During the last decade of the Nineteenth Century a new Protestant faith was conceived in Kansas City, Missouri, that sought to reveal Christ's love and it was called Unity:
"Unity would be the last group in the world to seek or expect recognition for its trailblazing, pioneering religious techniques. Yet, many, many decades before the phrases 'the power of positive thinking' and 'abundant living' were heard in the land, Unity taught that God never meant this life to be a trial and a vale of tears, but, on the contrary,that it 'is God's will for man to be strong and vigorous and rich and successful and happy."
Following the close of the Second World War America took a good look at herself and slowly began to clean house. Assorted magazines and newspapers began to publish articles about various injustices that seemed to be overlooked during the previous centuries in order that remedies could be found and national integrity restored. When this column was sent to the printer it was a time when numerous states barred atheists from holding elective office, serving as a court witness or work as a school teacher. All of this was taking place in spite of the fact that the census bureau records indicated that as many as 36.6% of the U.S. citizenry had no affiliation with any religious institution.
Another article about an outstanding Episcopal bishop can be read here...
This is a report from 1952 on the largest group of Christians in the United States during that period in time:
"The United States is sometimes called a 'Protestant nation.' It isn't, of course. It is a nation of 150,697,361 free people, free to choose whatever path to God they please. But it was settles largely by Protestant denominations; it has, in fact, the largest Protestant population of any nation on earth. By latest tally, 81,862,328 Americans belong to religious bodies. Of these 59 percent are Protestant. Roman Catholics account for 33 percent, Jews for six percent and other faiths for two percent."