In a recent study, only 47% of Irish citizens said they considered themselves religious, a big drop from 7 years ago when 69% of people said they considered themselves religious.
Research company Red C conducted their research by interviewing 51,000 people around the world and around 1,000 in Ireland. The group called the claim a "significant drop". The Belfast Telegraph reports that only Vietnam is seen a bigger drop in people declaring themselves to be religious over the past seven years.
Ireland has traditionally been dominated by the Christianity, with a 2011 census showing that 84.16 percent of the country identified as Roman Catholic. However, the authority of the church has been rocked by multiple scandals in recent years, most notably allegations of widespread sexual abuse and a subsequent cover-up by the church.
Irish Prime Minister Enda Kelly openly criticized the church last year, saying that "the rape and torture of children were downplayed in favor of upholding the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and reputation."
In a Reddit thread many users are voicing anecdotal support for the findings. One user writes:
I'm from Ireland and can confirm this. I'm in my early 20's and can't think of anyone in my age bracket who actually goes to church or believes in God anymore.
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