Religions in Scotland
As in any country, religion forms a vital part of the culture in Scotland. A recent census has established that the majority of the country practices Christianity. While the national church of the country is the Church of Scotland, it is important to recognize that it is not under the control of the state. Even though Christianity is the largest religious group in Scotland, there are various other religions being practiced, each with their own history and connection to Scotland.
Christianity not only has the largest following in Scotland but is also one of the oldest, with its presence here dating as far back as the second century. The Church of Scotland has played a vital role in the promotion of tolerance and has much influence on the country’s culture. Other denominations include the Roman Catholic Church, Presbyterians, Pentecostals, Baptists and Episcopalians, along with Methodists, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Jehovah’s Witnesses and Congregationalists. It is believed that Judaism was introduced into Scotland during the High Middle Ages. The highest concentration of followers of Judaism is found in Glasgow and Edinburgh, with small groups found spread out across the country.
Over the years, as immigrants and travelers began to arrive on the shores of the country, different religions were established. Visitors to Scotland will also find that religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Sikhism are also practiced. There are also minority religions such as Rasta, Neopagan and Bahai Faith. The census also revealed that there was a percentage of the population in Scotland that have no ties with religion, as well as groups that promote and develop secularism and humanism. Paganism is rarely found in Scotland, with Shetland being the only destination where this form of religion is common.