New Zealand was surprisingly every different from Australia. In so many respects Australia and New Zealand were very simpler, but when it comes to Religion and Faith, I quickly realized how different they were. Our house was in a little down called Birkenhead, driving and walking down the streets, church were very common and very traditional.
According to New Zealand’s 2013 Census, 47.65% of New Zealanders are Christian; 12.6% are Catholic, 11.8% are Anglican, 8.5% are Presbyterian, and 7.3% belong to some other denomination of Christianity. 41.9% recorded that they do not identify with a religion, and 6.32% belong to some other religion such as Islam, Hinduism, or Judaism.
In researching, I found a couple interesting stats publish by the Pew Research Center:
- New Zealand has some of the lowest levels of government restrictions on religion in the world, with a score in 2016 of just 0.48 out of 10 on Pew Research Center’s Government Restrictions Index (GRI).
- Almost all New Zealanders said in a 2011-2012 survey that they would accept a neighbor of a different religion. The World Values Survey asked New Zealanders to mention groups of people they would not like to have as a neighbor. The list of choices included “people of a different religion” as well as other possibilities such as drug addicts, heavy drinkers and people of a different race.
- New Zealand had “low” levels of social hostilities involving religion in 2016 (with a Social Hostilities Index score of 0.9 out of 10).
Here’s are my data points from Australia, which I was only able to complete by researching:
- Within a 3-mile radius of our house in Birkenhead there were 19-churches. Compared to what I’ve seen in the past few countries, it was enough to be noticeable.
- Size of Churches … big and traditional. Some were really old, beautiful building. Some were small and newer.
- Denominations … all the churches I saw were Christian.
- Services … based on my research the services were pretty typical to what you’d find in a Christian church, Sundays and Wednesdays. Of course, the Catholic churches offered daily mass services.
As for, what does “Sunday” means, Sunday was a big church day. Lots of people attending services. Many of the shops had limited hours or were closed Sundays.
Thanks to Google, here are some photos from Birkenhead: