Cultural Tug of War and Korean Americans and Their Religions
Why have religion and spirituality been so central for the approximately 1.1 million people of Korean ancestry in the United States? The answer, in part, lies in their history. Many immigrant groups have turned to their religious traditions as a means of surviving and negotiating an often harsh and hostile environment.
Surveys indicate that approximately 75 percent of Korean-Americans are active participants in Protestant congregations. Of the other 25 percent some are Catholic, some are Buddhist and some have no affiliation. Since only a quarter of South Korea's population is Christian, something obviously is taking place in the migration and settlement process, even if one assumes that a greater proportion of those who chose to come to the U.S. are Christian.
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