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Religious Adherents, 2010 (World Christian Database)1

Namibia Southern Africa World
Baha'i 0.5% 0.5% 0.1%
Buddhist 0.0% 0.3% 7.2%
Chinese Universalist 0.0% <0.1% 6.3%
Christian 91.2% 82.4% 32.8%
Confucianist 0.0% <0.1% 0.1%
Ethnoreligionist 5.9% 7.9% 3.5%
Hindu 0.0% 2.1% 13.8%
Jain 0.0% <0.1% <0.1%
Jewish 0.1% 0.1% 0.2%
Muslim 0.3% 1.5% 22.5%
Shintoist 0.0% 0.0% <0.1%
Sikh 0.0% <0.1% 0.3%
Spiritist 0.0% <0.1% 0.2%
Taoist 0.0% 0.0% 0.1%
Zoroastrian 0.0% 0.0% <0.1%
Neoreligionists 0.0% <0.1% 0.9%
Atheist <0.1% 0.2% 2.0%
Agnostic 1.9% 4.8% 9.8%

Religious Demography2

The country has an area of 320,827 square miles and a population of 2 million. More than 90 percent identify themselves as Christian. The two largest Christian groups are the Lutheran and Roman Catholic churches, while smaller numbers are affiliated with the Baptist Church, the Methodist Church, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons). There are also a number of Zionist Churches (a mixture of traditional African beliefs and Pentecostal Christianity), especially in urban areas. The Dutch Reformed Church of Namibia is predominantly made up of members of the Afrikaner ethnic group. The Himba and San ethnic groups practice indigenous religions. Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, and the Baha'i faith are also practiced. Practitioners of these religious groups are predominantly immigrants, descendants of immigrants, or recent converts. They reside primarily in urban areas. Muslims, almost exclusively Sunni and comprising both citizens and foreign nationals, represent less than 1 percent of the population.


Note: The World Christian Database (WCD) estimates, used in the Religious Adherents section above, count each person as belonging to a maximum of one religious group. For more information, see the WCD methodology document. The U.S. State Department's International Religious Freedom report estimates, used in the Religious Demography section, use less restrictive criteria in which a person who identifies with more than one religion is classified as a follower of each. In certain cases (such as Japan and other nations with strong folk religion traditions), this can cause counts to vary widely between estimates. Users are advised to consult the relevant source documents before determining which counts to cite.

1.  The World Christian Database (WCD) is based on the 2600-page award-winning World Christian Encyclopedia and World Christian Trends, first published in 1982 and revised in 2001. This extensive work on World religion is now completely updated and integrated into the WCD online database. Designed for both the casual user and research scholar, information is readily available on religious activities, growth rates, religious literature, worker activity, and demographic statistics. Additional secular data is incorporated on population, health, education, and communications. A dataset with these and the other international measures highlighted on the country pages can be downloaded from this website. Used with permission.

2.  The U.S. State Department's International Religious Freedom Report is submitted to Congress annually by the Department of State in compliance with Section 102(b) of the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA) of 1998. This report supplements the most recent Human Rights Reports by providing additional detailed information with respect to matters involving international religious freedom. It includes individual country chapters on the status of religious freedom worldwide. A dataset with these and the other international measures highlighted on the country pages can be downloaded from this website. These State Department reports are open source.

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