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Religious information


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Information about religion in Canada

A parallel report for the U.S. is located elsewhere

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bullet "Generally, not only across Canada but the entire Western world, we're aware of a trend that says that institutionalized religion is not central to peoples' lives, as is individualized religion." 3 Rev. Harry Oussoren, executive minister of the United Church of Canada's Support to Local Ministries. 1


Like the United States, Canada is one of the most religiously diverse countries in the world. South-eastern Ontario has been called the most religiously diverse region of any country in the world. A major contributor to this trend is the large number of immigrants to Canada who have settled in the Toronto, ON area.

Some trends in Canada:

bullet The percentage of Christians is in relatively rapid decline in Canada, dropping at about 0.9 percentage points per year. Although this is a miniscule drop over the course of a year, it amounts to almost 10% over a decade.
bullet Small non-Christian faith groups are increasing in number and popularity.
bullet The percentage of Atheists, Agnostics, Humanists, secularists, and NOTAS -- persons who are not affilisted with any religious group -- is increasing rapidly.
bullet Many Canadians identify themselves as adherents of a specific religion, religious group, or denomination, but no longer attend religious services.

Topics covered in this section:

bullet2001 Census data on religion The next census dealing with religion will be performed in 2011
bullet Detailed Christian data from the 2001 census
bullet Detailed non-Christian data from the 2001 census
bullet How Americans and Canadians differ religiously
bullet Same-sex marriage in Canada (a BIG section)

Religious intolerance In Canada:

bullet Government treatment of religious charities
bullet The freedom of religious groups and individuals to discriminate
bulletOther topics: Importance of religion; denominational reaction; comments; Religious Freedom Office

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Reference used:

  1. Ferdy Baglo, "Canada's churches suffering serious decline. Researcher says membership losses pushing Canadian churches to brink of 'extinction'," Spero News, 2005-DEC-06, at:

Copyright 1998 to 2013 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 1998-JUL-5
Last update: 2013-SEP-27
Author: B.A. Robinson

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