A Buffet of Faiths

By Cierra Putman
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - Many know the term "blended family," but a new national study out shows thousands of Americans are blending their faith and views from other religions.

The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life talked to just over 4,000 Americans across the country via phone and learned they're brewing up a concoction that's molded to their desire.

But a local man of the cloth says that trend hasn't quite hit the Permian Basin yet.

"I find it quite enlightening to see and interesting in what they call mainstream religion today," Pastor Robert Pase of Grace Lutheran Church said. "But realizing the Permian Basin is not mainstream, the Permian Basin is different."

According to Pase, the reason why is simple.

"You'll find the Permian Basin is a very conservative area," Pase said. "The Bible is conservative, while on the coasts, it's well we got to be politically correct what about this group of people we might offend. I've not seen that in Midland, it's this is what we believe in and this is where we stand."

And he thinks that's a good thing, but religion is changing even in West Texas.

"In my home for example, we don't drink, we don't smoke, we do a lot what other Churches will do," Victoria Hernandez said. "We just don't go to Church. I always believe in God and I respect what somebody believes or disbelieves."

Another man is a firm Catholic, but doesn't mind mixing and matching.

"It's open to everybody's opinion, that's what I think at least," Herman Briones said. "But I believe what that Church and what they say and everything."

So the trend hasn't blown in yet, but Pase forecasts it's coming.

"Whatever happens in the rest of the country usually hits us six months later," Pase said. "It'll get here, but it won't last as long here because we have a base, a solid foundation."