Like a Virgin Birth 1% of women claim immaculate conceptionNearly three-quarters of Americans believe in the virgin birth of Jesus Christ according to a Pew Research poll. One percent of women don’t need faith. They’ve experienced the miracle firsthand.

Britain’s Medical Journal (BMJ) has published a study by the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill that examined the 14 year lifecycle period between adolescence and adulthood, and found that 45 out of 5,340 pregnancies belonged to virgin mothers.

The women who had virgin pregnancies weren’t anymore religious than those who conceived the old-fashioned way but they were more likely to have taken chastity pledges as well as have parents who were uncomfortable with having ‘the sex talk.’

There are inherent problems with the self-reported data, which was used to infer the virgin pregnancies rather than directly asking the women. It’s possible the subjects intentionally or mistakenly gave the researchers incorrect dates says lead author Amy H. Herring, a biostatiscian at UNC’s Gillings School of Global Public Health.

“Even though we used technology to try to enhance the candour of respondents, we still see responses that are unrealistic,” Herring told the AFP. “In fact we went back a few weeks ago to see if this was a phenomenon that was confined only to the women, and we actually found a few virgin fathers as well — which is a little harder to get your head around.”