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Religious Adherents, 2010 (World Christian Database)1

Tonga Polynesia World
Baha'i 3.5% 0.9% 0.1%
Buddhist 0.1% <0.1% 7.2%
Chinese Universalist 0.0% 0.2% 6.3%
Christian 95.8% 96.2% 32.8%
Confucianist 0.0% 0.0% 0.1%
Ethnoreligionist <0.1% <0.1% 3.5%
Hindu <0.1% <0.1% 13.8%
Jain 0.0% 0.0% <0.1%
Jewish 0.0% <0.1% 0.2%
Muslim 0.0% <0.1% 22.5%
Shintoist 0.0% 0.0% <0.1%
Sikh 0.0% 0.0% 0.3%
Spiritist 0.0% 0.0% 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 0.4% 2.2% 9.8%

Religious Demography2

The country is an archipelago with a land area of 288 square miles and a population of 101,000. According to the last published census data from 1996, membership by percentage of population of major religious groups was: Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga, 41 percent; Roman Catholic Church, 16 percent; Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons), 14 percent; Free Church of Tonga, 12 percent; and all other groups, 17 percent. However, both Roman Catholics and Mormons stated that the number of their adherents is higher than reported, and a 2006 survey conducted by the Free Wesleyan Church put its membership at only 35 percent of the population. The Tokaikolo Church (a local offshoot of the Methodist Church), Seventh-day Adventists, Assemblies of God, Anglicans, the Baha'i Faith, Islam, and Hinduism have small numbers of adherents.


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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