First coined in 1924 the term Bible Belt refers generally to the southern US states where Evangelical Protestantism has its strongest presence. Oddly enough the term is used with pride by believers and often as an insult by non-believers. The geographic spread of the Bible Belt is generally the former slave states of the south, although there are pockets of exclusion in this region and areas of believers stretching to the north and west as well.
The main churches of the Bible Belt are fundamentalist Christian churches including:
- A variety of Baptist churches of various degrees of strictness
- Pentecostal churches including the Assembly of God and many associated with tele-evangelism
- Various conservative Methodist churches who regard the mainstream Methodists as too worldly
- Undenominational churches such as the Churches of Christ and Brethren
TThe Bible Belt states are generally very conservative politically and strongly favour the Republican Party. Various lobby groups, termed the Religious Right, seek to influence public policy especially in the areas of abortion, gay rights, foreign policy, creationist science education and freedom to carry guns. The political power of the Bible Belt can be formidable, but generally the more the Republican party seeks to meet these aims the more they alienate right wing voters of the more liberal states of California, New England and around the Great Lakes.
Attractions with appeal for Christian believers include:
- Orlando’s Holy Land Experience is a truly amazing glimpse into the Israel of the Bible where history comes alive. Visit our Florida activities page
- Prepare to have your ideas challenged at Cincinnati’s Creation Museum, a 70,000 sq foot walk through the Bible’s pages. Visit our Ohio activities page
- The world’s first mass tele-evangelist was Billy Graham and now his achievements are celebrated at Chicago’s Billy Graham Center Museum. Visit our Illinois activities page
- The Living Bible Museum in Mansfield Ohio, has an impressive display of wax figures recreating Bible scenes as you’ve never imagined them before. Visit our Ohio activities page
- Oklahoma’s largest church is LifeChurch in Edmund. A visit will reveal a modern group using the latest technology and TV to reach the masses. Visit our Oklahoma activities page