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Greater Western Sydney Region

Religion

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This topic has been updated with 2016 Census data for the LGA or other primary area only. What's this?

In the Greater Western Sydney Region, the number of Christians experienced the greatest change (-166,020) compared to the non religious and non Christians in 2016.

The Greater Western Sydney Region's religion statistics provide an indicator of cultural identity and ethnicity when observed in conjunction with other key variables. Religion data reveal the major concentrations of religions as well as revealing the proportion of people with no religious affiliation. There are a number of reasons for different religious compositions across areas including the country of birth and ethnic background of the population, the age of the population (belief in religion is generally stronger, the older the population) and changes in values and belief systems.

The Greater Western Sydney Region's religion statistics should be analysed in conjunction with other ethnicity statistics such as Country of Birth data and Language Spoken data to assist in identifying specific cultural and ethnic groups.

Derived from the Census question:

'What is the person's religion?'

Total population

Religion - Ranked by size
Greater Western Sydney Region - Total persons (Usual residence)20162011Change
ReligionNumber%Greater Sydney %Number%Greater Sydney %2011 to 2016
Western (Roman) Catholic500,98525.624.2575,37529.627.5-74,391
Anglican228,38311.712.0293,69915.116.1-65,316
Islam158,4018.15.3143,5477.44.7+14,854
Hinduism98,8885.13.570,9803.72.6+27,907
Buddhism91,3034.73.9101,5455.24.1-10,243
Christian,nfd50,8922.62.236,3791.91.7+14,513
Presbyterian and Reformed37,9901.92.042,6712.22.4-4,682
Uniting Church37,5781.92.049,7232.62.8-12,146
Greek Orthodox29,5501.52.435,5231.82.7-5,973
Baptist28,1201.41.232,0461.61.5-3,927
Pentecostal27,8921.41.127,6641.41.1+227
Maronite Catholic21,9061.10.718,2740.90.6+3,631
Sikhism21,2291.10.614,5350.70.4+6,694
Other Protestant10,5790.50.57,2210.40.3+3,358
Assyrian Apostolic8,4180.40.28,0740.40.2+344
Latter Day Saints (Mormons)8,3520.40.38,9090.50.3-557
Coptic Orthodox8,2140.40.38,8000.50.3-586
Other Eastern Catholic7,9620.40.25,0440.30.1+2,918
Serbian Orthodox6,2490.30.310,0730.50.3-3,824
Seventh Day Adventist6,1510.30.26,5820.30.3-432
Jehova's Witnesses5,7190.30.27,0290.40.3-1,310
Other Non-Christian Religions4,8730.20.36,6150.30.2-1,743
Other Eastern Orthodox4,7220.20.214,3550.70.6-9,633
Macedonian Orthodox4,7010.20.36,3690.30.4-1,668
Lutheran3,4250.20.26,5700.30.4-3,145
Russian Orthodox3,2800.20.23,9980.20.2-718
Salvation Army2,7000.10.13,7830.20.2-1,083
Brethren2,4370.10.12,6350.10.1-198
Churches of Christ2,4130.10.12,8030.10.1-390
Baha'i2,1210.10.12,0340.10.1+87
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Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing 2011 and 2016. Compiled and presented by .id , the population experts.

Excludes religions with fewer than 20 adherents, or less than 0.1% of the total population.

Religion - Summary
Greater Western Sydney Region - Total persons (Usual residence)20162011Change
Religion totalsNumber%Greater Sydney %Number%Greater Sydney %2011 to 2016
Christian total1,054,16454.051.71,220,18462.860.9-166,020
Non Christian total380,42319.514.4343,73817.713.2+36,686
Non-classifiable religious belief7,7670.40.59,8410.50.6-2,074
No religion360,48218.524.9239,18712.317.6+121,294
Not stated149,3987.68.5130,3936.77.6+19,005

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing 2011 and 2016. Compiled and presented by .id , the population experts.

Religion, 2016
Religion, 2016 Western (Roman) Catholic, Greater Sydney: 24.2% Anglican, Greater Sydney: 12.0% Islam, Greater Sydney: 5.3% Hinduism, Greater Sydney: 3.5% Buddhism, Greater Sydney: 3.9% Christian,nfd, Greater Sydney: 2.2% Presbyterian and Reformed, Greater Sydney: 2.0% Uniting Church, Greater Sydney: 2.0% Greek Orthodox, Greater Sydney: 2.4% Baptist, Greater Sydney: 1.2% Western (Roman) Catholic, Greater Western Sydney Region: 25.6% Anglican, Greater Western Sydney Region: 11.7% Islam, Greater Western Sydney Region: 8.1% Hinduism, Greater Western Sydney Region: 5.1% Buddhism, Greater Western Sydney Region: 4.7% Christian,nfd, Greater Western Sydney Region: 2.6% Presbyterian and Reformed, Greater Western Sydney Region: 1.9% Uniting Church, Greater Western Sydney Region: 1.9% Greek Orthodox, Greater Western Sydney Region: 1.5% Baptist, Greater Western Sydney Region: 1.4%
Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing, 2016 (Usual residence data)
Compiled and presented in profile.id by .id, the population experts.
Change in religion, 2011 to 2016
Change in religion, 2011 to 2016 Western (Roman) Catholic, Greater Western Sydney Region: -74,391 Anglican, Greater Western Sydney Region: -65,316 Islam, Greater Western Sydney Region: +14,854 Hinduism, Greater Western Sydney Region: +27,907 Buddhism, Greater Western Sydney Region: -10,243 Christian,nfd, Greater Western Sydney Region: +14,513 Presbyterian and Reformed, Greater Western Sydney Region: -4,682 Uniting Church, Greater Western Sydney Region: -12,146 Greek Orthodox, Greater Western Sydney Region: -5,973 Baptist, Greater Western Sydney Region: -3,927
Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing, 2011 and 2016 (Usual residence data)
Compiled and presented in profile.id by .id, the population experts.

Dominant groups

Analysis of the religious affiliation of the population of the Greater Western Sydney Region in 2016 compared to Greater Sydney shows that there was a higher proportion of people who professed a religion and a lower proportion who stated they had no religion.

Overall, 73.4% of the population nominated a religion, and 18.5% said they had no religion, compared with 66.2% and 24.9% respectively for Greater Sydney.

The largest single religion in the Greater Western Sydney Region was Western (Roman) Catholic, with 25.6% of the population or 500,985 people as adherents.

The major differences between the religious affiliation for the population of the Greater Western Sydney Region and Greater Sydney were:

  • A larger percentage who nominated Islam (8.1% compared to 5.3%)
  • A larger percentage who nominated Hinduism (5.1% compared to 3.5%)
  • A larger percentage who nominated Western (Roman) Catholic (25.6% compared to 24.2%)

Emerging groups

The largest changes in the religious affiliation of the population in the Greater Western Sydney Region between 2011 and 2016 were for those who nominated:

  • Western (Roman) Catholic (-74,391 persons)
  • Anglican (-65,316 persons)
  • Hinduism (+27,907 persons)
  • Islam (+14,854 persons)
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