Census 2011 – Religion in Ireland
Results on Religion from the 2011 Census
84% of the population self-identify as Roman Catholic (3,861,300)
Church of Ireland (Anglican) at 6.4% of the population, up to 129,039 in 2011.
49,204 : The number of Muslims living in Ireland, making it the most important non-Christian
45% : The increase in the number of people identifying themselves as having no religion (269,800 people)
13%: The percentage of 25-29 year olds who had ‘no religion’ the highest for any age group
40.9% increase to 40,161 the number of people seeing themselves as ‘Christian‘, rather than any denominational label. ( Perhaps given the traumas of the Catholic Church, quite a few people who no longer want to be described as members but still want to identify as Christians? Perhaps some evangelicals in here too? There was a bit of an effort in the 2006 census to encourage evangelicals to self-identify as such. The numbers doing so in 2011 actually declined (5276 down to 4188). I’d guess this was because people reverted to denominational label or chose ‘Christian’ instead. ‘Evangelical’ as a self-chosen label doesn’t really translate very well in an Irish context.)
Atheists in Ireland went up from 929 to 3925.
Orthodox went up 117.4% from 2006 to 45,223 in 2011.
And here’s a shocker regarding Ireland and its close assocation with J N Darby and the huge impact of Brethrenism historically and globally – a total of 336 in 2011.
Don’t know what on earth happened to the Methodists since 2006: down 43% from 12,160 to 6842.
Significant percentages of what the Census calls ‘non-Irish’ people lie behind the growth of many of the religious categories. Probably mainly Polish immigrants within the growth of Roman Catholicism for example (up by 179,899 people from “mainly European” communities). Simliarly for Apostolic / Pentecostal growth – probably mostly African (mainly Nigerian).
Comments, as ever, welcome.