A growing number of Canadians are identifying themselves as having no religious affiliation, although more than two-thirds of the country’s population says they’re Christian. Statistics Canada’s voluntary National Household Survey (NHS) released Wednesday also shows immigration is contributing to the growth of non-Christian religions, including Muslim, Hindu, Sikh and Buddhist. The NHS shows nearly one-quarter (about 7.85 million people) of the Canadian population had no religious affiliation — a sizeable increase from 16.5% a decade earlier. Roman Catholics easily remain the largest Christian group, with more than 12.7 million people identifying themselves as Roman Catholic, or approximately 38.7% of Canada’s population. The largest share of Roman Catholics lived in Quebec (45.3%) and Ontario (31%). Canadians affiliated with the United Church were the second-largest Christian group, with approximately two million people, or 6.1% of the total population, followed by 1.6 million Anglicans (5% of the population). Statisticians caution there is no way of knowing how good or bad the information from the National Household Survey is. The voluntary nature of the survey leaves gaps in the data from groups that tend not to respond to voluntary surveys, including new immigrants and low-income families. Experts believe the data should provide a fairly accurate broad scale picture of Canada, but that the smaller the group surveyed, the less reliable the information. In 2011, more than one million people identified themselves as Muslim, accounting for 3.2% of Canada’s population — up from 2% in the 2001 census. Ontario was home to more than half the Muslim population. Two-thirds of Canada’s one million Muslims lived in the three largest metropolitan areas: Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. Toronto, by far, had the largest Muslim population, at approximately 424,900. The largest share of Muslims who arrived in Canada between 2006 and 2011 came from Pakistan. Nearly half a million people said they’re Hindu (1.5% of the population), with about 455,000 people identifying themselves as Sikh, and 366,800 as Buddhists. Most of the recent Hindu or Sikh immigrants came from India, while most Buddhists came from China. Nearly half a million people said they’re Hindu (1.5% of the population), with about 455,000 people identifying themselves as Sikh, and 366,800 as Buddhists. Most of the recent Hindu or Sikh immigrants came from India, while most Buddhists came from China. Ontario was home to 73.6% of the total Hindu population in 2011. Among the 455,000 Sikhs in Canada, roughly 44% lived in British Columbia and nearly 40% in Ontario. Immigration is responsible for the growing popularity of some religions in Canada and absence of faith among others, according to the National Household Survey. Among immigrants who arrived in Canada before 1971, only 2.9% identified themselves as Muslim, Hindu, Sikh and Buddhist. However, these religions accounted for 33% of immigrants who arrived between 2001 and 2011. In the 2011 survey, 78.4% of the immigrants who came to Canada prior to 1971 identified themselves as Christians. However, the share of immigrants who came to Canada over the last five years and identify themselves as Christian decreased to 47.5%. In the latest survey, 16% of immigrants who came to Canada before 1971 had no religious affiliation, but that proportion rose to 22% among immigrants who came between 2001 and 2005, and 19.5% of recent immigrants. Source: http://life.nationalpost.com/2013/05/08/larger-portion-of-canadians-denying-religious-affiliation/
Hi! How can we help you?
Click below button to start chat