- Religious Freedom
- Religious Regulation
- Religious Support
Preferred Religion (2015)1: Western Christian
Majority Religion (2015)2: Protestant (incl. Anglican, Pentecostal) (26.5%)
Religious Adherents, (2015)2
|Christian (all denominations combined)||41.3%||37.9%||29.9%|
|Muslim (all denominations combined)||11.8%||50.5%||22.8%|
|Ethnoreligionist (incl. Animist, Shamanist)||0.6%||9.8%||2.5%|
|Not Religious (incl. Atheist)||1.5%||0.3%||12%|
The country has an area of 43,000 square miles and a population of 3.5 million. It is estimated that as much as 40 percent of the population practices either Christianity or Christianity combined with elements of traditional indigenous religious beliefs. Approximately 40 percent exclusively practices traditional indigenous religious beliefs. An estimated 20 percent of the population practices Islam. A small percentage is Baha'i, Hindu, Sikh, or Buddhist.
Christian groups include Lutheran, Baptist, Episcopal, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormons), Seventh-day Adventists, United Methodist, African Methodist Episcopal (AME) and AME Zion denominations, and a variety of Pentecostal churches. Some of the Pentecostal movements are affiliated with churches outside the country, while others are independent.
Christians live throughout the country. Muslims belong mainly to the Mandingo and Vai ethnic groups. Mandingo reside throughout the country, while Vai live predominantly in the west. Ethnic groups in all regions participate in the traditional religious practices of the Poro and Sande secret societies.
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, the co-principal investigator of the World Religion Database, and co-author of the World Christian Encyclopedia series.
2. The Religious Characteristics of States Dataset Project: Demographics reports annual estimates of religious demographics, both country by country and region by region. It estimates populations and percentages of adherents of 100 religious denominations including second level subdivisions 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, the co-principal investigator of the World Religion Database, and co-author of the World Christian Encyclopedia series.
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.