Christ religion

What is the biggest religion in Fort St. John?

More than half of Fort St. John residents have no religious affiliation, census data shows

More than half of Fort St. John and area residents have no religious affiliation, according to new census data released today.

According to the 2021 census, 16,590 people said they had no connection to any religion or held other secular views, such as being an atheist, agnostic or humanist.

This represents 58.4% of the local population of the Fort St. John metropolitan area, which includes Charlie Lake and Taylor.

By comparison, 10,435 people identified as Christian, or 36.7% of the population, of which more than a quarter, or 2,900 people, identified as Catholic.

Although 3,865 Christians reported in the census did not specify a denomination, among the largest other denominations reported in the region were Anglicans (575), Pentecostals (495), and United Church (425).

There were 680 people who reported following other unspecified Christian and Christianity-related traditions.

Meanwhile, there were 490 Sikhs, 290 Hindus, and 260 Muslims reported in the census, along with 55 Buddhists.

Sixty people reported having traditional North American Native spiritual beliefs, while 230 reported other unspecified religions and spiritual traditions.

Statistics Canada said this year’s census release presents the most comprehensive portrait of Canadians’ religious affiliations to date, as the census is linked to a list of 200 sample denominations for people to review before writing in their religion, which encourages people to be more specific.

Those who are affiliated with a particular religion are not necessarily practicing members of that religion, Statistics Canada noted.

Religion in Fort St John

• No religion and secular outlook – 16,590

• Christian – 10,435

  • Unspecified – 3,865
  • Catholic – 2,900
  • Anglican-575
  • Pentecostal/Other Charismatic – 495
  • United Church – 425
  • Baptist – 335
  • Lutheran – 280
  • Jehovah’s Witness – 250
  • Anabaptist – 235
  • Latter Day Saints – 130
  • Presbyterian – 115
  • Orthodox Christian – 75
  • Methodist and Wesleyan – 45
  • Reformed – 15
  • Other Christian and Christianity-related traditions – 680

• Other religion

  • Sikh – 490
  • Hindu – 290
  • Muslim – 260
  • Buddhist – 55
  • Jewish – 25
  • Traditional Spirituality (Native North American) – 60
  • Other religions and spiritual traditions – 230

Nationally, more than a third of Canadians reported no religious affiliation in the census.

The proportion of non-religious Canadians has more than doubled in the past 20 years — to 34.6%, from 16.5% in 2001 — and the share of the country identifying as Christian has declined.

They represented 53.3% of the population in 2021, compared to 67.3% in 2011 and 77.1% in 2001.

In the census, some 11,390 people described themselves as humanists, a philosophy centered on human dignity.

Even as the proportion of non-religious people increases, some non-Christian religions are growing, mainly due to immigration.

Islam is the second most commonly reported religion in Canada in 2021, with nearly 5% of the population identifying as Muslim. This has more than doubled since 2001, when the share was only 2%.

Meanwhile, 2.3% of the population now identifies as Hindu, up from 1% in 2001.

The Pagan umbrella, which also includes 12,625 Wiccans, now encompasses 45,325.

— with files from The Canadian Press