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"The 1950s was "probably the most religious period in American history," according to Putnam, when 55% of Americans attended religious services regularly. Cultural changes ‚ÄĒ think: sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll ‚ÄĒ led to a massive decline in religious observance in the 1960s, the scholars said."
I heard there was also more fear in the 50s, just a few years after WWII and Hiroshima, of getting attacked or even nuked by Russia or China, which would tend to increase church membership, too. People who didn't think our race would survive until the 60s started to relax more when those years arrived, and thus church membership dropped.