Most Americans say 'Merry Christmas' and prefer Rudolph over Charlie Brown

Christmas cards on sale

Christmas cards on sale

The poll was conducted from November 29 to December 4 among US adults, according to the Pew report.

According to polling data released by the Monmouth University Polling Institute, two-thirds of Americans use "Merry Christmas" as their preferred greeting during the holiday season.

Yet, while Americans' commemoration of Christmas may have less of a religious component now than in the past, the share of Americans who say they celebrate Christmas in some way has hardly budged.

Christmas cards on sale at a Target store for the 2017 holiday season
Christmas cards on sale at a Target store for the 2017 holiday season

Many surveyed agreed that the religious aspects of Christmas are not as prominent in American culture as in the past, but very few were bothered by this.

About eight-in-ten will gather with family and friends.

32 percent said they would prefer "Merry Christmas".

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"One of the most striking changes in recent years involves the share of Americans who say they believe the birth of Jesus occurred as depicted in the Bible", the Pew survey said.

In 2013, 59 percent of Americans said they celebrated Christmas as a religious holiday. "Likewise, 68 percent of US adults now say they believe that the wise men were guided by a star and brought gifts for baby Jesus, down from 75 percent".

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52 percent of Americans say they don't care how a store clerk acknowledges the holiday, while 32 percent would like to hear "Merry Christmas", and 15 percent would prefer "Happy Holidays" or "Seasons Greetings".

Fifty-four percent of Republicans and 19 percent of Democrats said they prefer "merry Christmas", while 61 percent of Democrats and 38 percent of Republicans said it doesn't matter.

The accounts of Jesus' birth are found in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, and they differ. In 2017, 83 percent said they believe in the virgin birth (86 percent in 2014), 82 percent said an angel announced Jesus' birth to shepherds (90 percent), 80 percent said wise men guided by a star brought Jesus gifts (84 percent) and 87 percent said Jesus was laid in a manger (92 percent).

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