Ireland's 50 official religions: Census finds 2,000 people identify as Jedi Knight while atheism doubles
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Ireland's 50 official religions: Census finds 2,000 people identify as Jedi Knight while atheism doubles

THE Force is with Ireland as more than 2,000 Irish people identify their religion as 'Jedi Knight', according to the latest figures.

According to the latest Central Statistic Office statistics, a total of 2,050 people identified themselves as a member of the Jedi faith in the 2016 census – with men making up the vast majority.

1,722 Irish men identify as ‘guardians of peace and justice in the galaxy’ – compared to just 328 women.

The Star Wars franchise made a triumphant return in 2015 following the release of The Force Awakens, the final scenes of which were filmed on the Co. Kerry island of Skellig Michael.

Under CSO rules any faith with more than 30 followers is classified as an official religion.

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Other weird and wonderful adherents include Ireland’s 92 ‘Pastafarians’, who worship at the altar of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster (FSM).

The validity of Pastafarianism has been questioned in a number of countries including the United States, where a judge ruled that FSM was not a religion.

Satanism has experienced something of a revival with 78 Irish people, just eight of them women, identifying as Satanists – up from precisely zero in the 2011 census.

More than 50 official religions are listed in the 2016 Census, including those who don’t believe in any deity.

A total of 7,477 people identified as Atheists in 2016 – exactly double the 3,726 who identified without a faith in 2011.

The Roman Catholic Church, however, is still the leading religion in Ireland with 3.7 million worshippers among the 4.7 million population.

Other religions listed include Zoroastrianism, which boasts of 25 males and 10 females; and Rastafarians, which includes 91 men and 23 women.

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There were also 59 male and 28 female members of the controversial Church of Scientology living in Ireland in 2016.

Elsewhere, 1,436 women and 1,209 men identified as Pagans.

Ireland's religious statistics for the 2016 and 2011 censuses can be found here

Ireland's 50 offical religions...

Roman Catholic
Church of Ireland
Muslim
Orthodox (Greek, Coptic, Russian)
Christian (Non Specified)
Presbyterian
Hindu
Apostolic or Prentecostal
Evangelical
Buddhist
Lapsed (Roman) Catholic
Atheist
Jehovah's Witness
Methodist
Agnostic
Lutheran
Protestant
Baptist
Spiritualist
Pagan/Pantheist
Born Again Christian
Jedi Knight
Jewish
Sikh
Mormon
Seventh Day Adventist
Society of Friends (Quaker)
Baha'i
Unitarian
Church of Christ
Jacobite
Brethren
Taost
Jain
Rastafari
Deist
Pastafarian
Scientologist
Hare Krishna
Satanism
Lapsed Church of Ireland
Kimbanguist
Congregationalist
Shinto
Salvation Army
Zoroastrian
Unificationist
Eckist
Theist