Bahrain
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  Preferred Religion (2015)1: Sunni

  Majority Religion (2015)2: Shia Muslim (34.3%)

Religious Adherents, (2015)2

Bahrain Western Asia World
Muslim (all denominations combined) 64.1% 83.4% 22.8%
 
  • Shia Muslim
  • 37.2% 24.6% 3.4%
     
  • Sunni Muslim
  • 26.9% 57% 19%
    Christian (all denominations combined) 15.3% 5.6% 29.9%
     
  • Catholic
  • 13.4% 2.1% 15%
     
  • Protestant
  • 0.5% --- 5.6%
     
  • Anglican
  • 0.4% --- 1.2%
     
  • Orthodox
  • 0.3% 3.2% 3%
     
  • Pentecostal
  • 0.2% --- 2.8%
     
  • Other and Unknown Christian
  • 0.4% 0.3% 2.3%
    Hindu 6.2% 0.8% 14.5%
    Buddhist (all denominations combined) 0.3% 0.2% 6.6%
     
  • Mahayana Buddhist
  • 0.3% --- 4.3%
    Bahai 0.2% --- 0.1%
    Other Religionist 0.1% 0.3% 0.2%
    Not Religious (incl. Atheist) 0.5% 1.2% 12%
    Unknown 13.3% 0.2% 4.8%

    Religious Demography3

    The country has an area of 231 square miles and a population of 1,050,000, according to a January 2008 government statement. The citizen population is 99 percent Muslim; Jews, Christians, Hindus, and Baha'is constitute the remaining 1 percent. Muslims belong to the Shi'a and Sunni branches of Islam, with Shi'a constituting an estimated 70 percent of the Muslim population.

    Foreigners, mostly from South Asia and from other Arab countries, constitute an estimated 49 percent of the population. Approximately half of resident foreigners are non-Muslim, including Christians (primarily Roman Catholic, Protestant, Syrian Orthodox, and Mar Thoma from South India), Hindus, Baha'is, Buddhists, and Sikhs.


    Sources

    1.  The Religious Characteristics of States Dataset Project: Government Religious Preference (GRP) measures government-level favoritism toward, and disfavor against, 30 religious denominations. A series of ordered categorical variables index the state's institutional favoritism in 28 different ways. The variables are combined to form five composite indices for five broad components of state-religion: official status, religious education, financial support, regulatory burdens, and freedom of practice. The five components' composites in turn are further combined into a single composite score, the GRP score. The RCS Data Project would like to acknowledge, recognize, and express our deepest gratitude for the significant contributions of Todd M. Johnson the principal investigator of the World Christian Database and the co-principal investigator of the World Religion Database.

    2.  The Religious Characteristics of States Dataset Project: Demographics reports the estimates of religious demographics, both country by country and region by region. The RCS was created to fulfill the unmet need for a dataset on the religious dimensions of countries of the world, with the state-year as the unit of observation. It estimates populations and percentages of adherents of 100 religious denominations including second level subdivision within Christianity and Islam. The RCS Data Project would like to acknowledge, recognize, and express our deepest gratitude for the significant contributions of Todd M. Johnson the principal investigator of the World Christian Database and the co-principal investigator of the World Religion Database.

    3.  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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