Religion in Rwanda


09/09/2019

Religion in Rwanda
The most recent statistics on religion in Rwanda were published by the US Government in 2013, yet the source information dates back to the national Census of 2002, which reports that: 56.9% of the Rwanda's population is Roman Catholic, 26% is Protestant, 11.1% is Seventh-day Adventist, 4.6% is Muslim (mainly Sunni), 1.7% claims no religious affiliation, and 0.1% practices traditional indigenous beliefs.

The figures for Protestants does not include the growing number of members of Jehovah's Witnesses (20,509 in 2011) who are strictly neutral to all social and political conflicts of any country they live in and evangelical Protestant groups. There is also a small population of Baha'is. There has been a proliferation of small, usually Christian-linked schismatic religious groups since the 1994 genocide.

Foreign missionaries and church-linked nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) of various religious groups operate in the country. Foreign missionaries openly promote their religious beliefs, and the Government welcomes their development assistance.

The Constitution of Rwanda provides for freedom of religion, and the Government generally respects this right in practice. Local government officials sometimes detain Jehovah's Witnesses for refusing to participate in security patrols. 

lso, during the 1994 ethnic conflict between Hutu and Tutsi in Rwanda, Jehovah’s Witnesses remained completely neutral. Witnesses of one tribe sheltered Witnesses of the other tribe, often at great risk to their own lives. In 2007, the US government received no reports of societal abuses or discrimination based on religious belief or practice.