Saint Lucia is an island nation located in the Eastern Caribbean Sea. Over 90% of the citizens of Saint Lucia are Christian. Every village in Saint Lucia contains a church and all Catholic holidays and sacraments are celebrated in the country. The cultural influence of the French is seen widely throughout Saint Lucian society. Religious authorities within Saint Lucia follow the Catholic clergy system.
Religious Demographics In Saint Lucia
According to the latest national census, just over 90% of the population of Saint Lucia align themselves with the Christian religion. Furthermore, approximately two-thirds of the Christian population consider themselves Roman Catholics. The Roman Catholic presence in Saint Lucia is credited to the early influence of French colonial settlers and merchants.
The remaining population that adhere to Christianity are either Protestant, Pentecostal, Evangelical, Baptists, Anglicans, or Jehovah's Witnesses.
Just 2.3% of Saint Lucians follow a non-Christian religious doctrine, There are very small sects of the population that practice Rastafarianism (1.9%), Hinduism (0.3%), and Islam (0.1%). 5.9% of inhabitants stated that they have no religion (atheist, agnostic) whatsoever. Also, 1.4% of the population did not state their religious beliefs on the National Census, whether they are atheist or otherwise.
Death And The Afterlife
Saint Lucians who align themselves as Christian believe in the Christian-based theory of the afterlife. Funerals are performed in a similar manner to a solemn Western wake but they also include distinct Saint Lucian cultural practices. These cultural practices include the serving of rum, juice, and strong coffee at the wake as well as traditional hymns and songs.
A funeral may be repeated one week after death and a mass is usually held on the one year anniversary of death. Those who have past are remembered every year on November 1st, which is known as All Saints Day. On this day each year, candles, flowers, and wreaths are placed on gravesites.
Freedom Of Religion In Saint Lucia
The government of Saint Lucia encourages freedom of choice when it comes to religious beliefs and practices. Although the majority of holidays and ceremonies are based on Christian beliefs, the government also recognizes other important religious days on the calendar.
Saint Lucia is a Caribbean country that contains very few native peoples and this is reflected in the religious beliefs of this small island nation. African and European influences are both widely spread throughout the Christian majority.