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Religious Adherents, 2010 (World Christian Database)1

Macau Eastern Asia World
Baha'i <0.1% <0.1% 0.1%
Buddhist 17.3% 19.0% 7.2%
Chinese Universalist 58.9% 26.8% 6.3%
Christian 7.2% 8.1% 32.8%
Confucianist 0.0% 0.4% 0.1%
Ethnoreligionist 0.0% 4.4% 3.5%
Hindu 0.0% <0.1% 13.8%
Jain 0.0% <0.1% <0.1%
Jewish <0.1% <0.1% 0.2%
Muslim 0.2% 1.4% 22.5%
Shintoist 0.0% 0.2% <0.1%
Sikh 0.0% <0.1% 0.3%
Spiritist 0.0% <0.1% 0.2%
Taoist 0.0% 0.5% 0.1%
Zoroastrian <0.1% <0.1% <0.1%
Neoreligionists 0.9% 2.8% 0.9%
Atheist 2.8% 6.7% 2.0%
Agnostic 12.5% 29.7% 9.8%

Religious Demography2

The region has a total area of 11 square miles and, according to official statistics in 2006, a population of 530,000. Buddhism, which is practiced by nearly 80 percent of the population, is the largest religion. Approximately 4 percent of the population is Roman Catholic and more than 1 percent is Protestant. Smaller religious groups include Baha'is, estimated at 2,500 persons; Muslims, estimated at 400 persons; and Falun Gong practitioners, estimated at 200 persons.

There are approximately 50 Buddhist and Taoist temples, 60 Christian churches (of which 18 are Catholic), and 1 mosque. Approximately 50 percent of primary and secondary students were enrolled in schools operated or funded by religious organizations. These schools may, under law, provide religious education, but the Government did not maintain statistics on this subject.

Many Protestant denominations are represented, including Baptist, Anglican, Lutheran, Presbyterian, Methodist, and Pentecostal churches. Evangelical denominations and independent local churches also exist in the region. The Reformed Theological Seminary (RTS) enrolled students in virtual seminary programs.

As of December 2006 an estimated 70 Protestant churches with 6,000 members conducted services in Chinese; attendance was reported to be approximately 4,000 worshippers every Sunday. An estimated 300 Protestants attended services conducted in foreign languages.


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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