Irish are still regular churchgoers  

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Beloved: Crowds attend the beatification of Fr John Sullivan SJ, at Gardiner Street church, Dublin, last May

Beloved: Crowds attend the beatification of Fr John Sullivan SJ, at Gardiner Street church, Dublin, last May

IRELAND remains one of the most religious countries in Europe, despite a decade or more of scandals and a notable decline in church attendance, the most recent European Social Study suggests.

Almost 30 per cent (29.9) of those who responded said that they attended church services on a weekly basis; 4.1 per cent attended more than once a week; and 1.8 per cent were daily worshippers, bringing the total of regular churchgoers to 35.9 per cent.

The figures were almost evenly matched by those who were not religious and attended rarely, or not at all: 35.9 per cent. A further 13.7 per cent went to church on at least a monthly basis, and 12.6 attended on special occasions, and at Christmas or Easter.

The Irish figures demonstrate a much higher worshipping community than the European average, with the exception of Poland, which, with a weekly attendance of 49.3 per cent, is higher than Ireland.

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