Dominican Republic
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  Preferred Religion (2015)1: Catholic

  Majority Religion (2015)2: Catholic (80.6%)

Religious Adherents, (2015)2

Dominican Republic Caribbean World
Christian (all denominations combined) 94.9% 67.3% 29.9%
 
  • Catholic
  • 80.6% 44% 15%
     
  • Protestant
  • 8.8% 11.8% 5.6%
     
  • Pentecostal
  • 2.7% 6.6% 2.8%
     
  • Other and Unknown Christian
  • 2.8% 3.7% 2.3%
    Christian Syncretic 2.2% 18.3% ---
    Other Religionist 0.2% 0.1% 0.2%
    Not Religious (incl. Atheist) 2.7% 9.1% 12%

    Religious Demography3

    The country, which occupies two-thirds of the island of Hispaniola, has an area of 18,815 square miles and a population of 9.4 million. The largest religious group is the Roman Catholic Church. Traditional Protestants, evangelical Christians (particularly Assembly of God, Church of God, Baptists, and Pentecostals), Seventh-day Adventists, Jehovah's Witnesses, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) have a much smaller but generally growing presence. According to a 2006 population survey by the Gallup Organization, the population is 39.8 percent Catholic (practicing), 29.1 percent Catholic (nonpracticing), and 18.2 percent evangelical Protestant. In the same study, 10.6 percent stated they had no religion. The Dominican Confederation of Evangelical Unity (CODUE) claims that evangelicals represent 16 to 20 percent of the population.

    There are approximately 300 Jews. Most live in Santo Domingo, which has a synagogue and a community leader but no ordained rabbi. There is a synagogue for the small Jewish community in Sosua. Both synagogues are led by the same individual.

    Various government sources estimate that there are between 5,000 and 10,000 Muslims, a figure that includes many foreign students. There is an active Sunni mosque in Santo Domingo, with approximately 300 regular worshippers. There is a small number of Buddhists and Hindus. Some Catholics practice a combination of Catholicism and Afro-Caribbean beliefs (santería), witchcraft (brujería), or voodoo (vodou), but because these practices are usually concealed, the number of adherents is unknown.


    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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