Where are Canada’s Catholics?
With so many famous Catholics in the news recently, we decided to figure out where Canada’s Catholics are.
In 2001, the latest year for which Statistics Canada has released information on religious affiliation, there were roughly 12.8 million Catholics in Canada, or about 43 per cent of the total population. They are the largest religious group in Canada, significantly outnumbering Protestants (about 29 per cent).
This wasn’t always the case. According to Statistics Canada, Protestants once significantly outnumbered Catholics. But waves of Catholic immigrants in the 1960s and 1970s eventually pushed the Catholic proportion higher, outnumbering Protestants for the first time in 1971. This was the peak of Canadian Catholicism, when 46 per cent of the population was Roman Catholic.
The maps below show the percentage of Catholics by census tract. While they are currently centered on Toronto, Vancouver and Ottawa, the maps cover most major cities in Canada. Simply type in a city name on any map to zoom to that area.
In Vancouver, on the other hand, there seem to be fewer Catholics, or they are more spread out.