Jamaican Religion
An Overview

subscribe here if new
Custom Search

jamaican_religion_revivalism jamaican_religion_methodist_church_falmouth

Jamaican Religion - by Tracie Blake

Religion is a very important part of everyday life in Jamaica. Primarily on Saturdays and Sundays the streets are filled with adults and children holding their Bibles and heading to and from Church.

There is a church on almost every corner of Jamaican streets. I am serious! Check the Guinness Book of World Records; we are listed as the country with the most churches per square mile!

As slaves, our descendants were not allowed to attend church. But, they were given Sunday as a rest day. On this day, their Masters would attend church and the slaves were left up to their own devices. So, they decided to keep church also. These ‘services’ consisted mainly of singing, drumming & dancing.

This changed somewhat when the Bible was first introduced by two black pastors in 1770 that were freed and took up their homes in Jamaica.

They were Baptists and preached and read to the slaves from the Bible. They eventually setup schools and taught the slaves to read so they could read and understand the bible for themselves.

This blossomed into a strong Christianity faith.

To today’s date, Jamaicans have remained predominantly Christians. However, this has been broken off into many different denominations such as:

  1. Presbyterian,
  2. Pentecostal,
  3. Methodist, 
  4. Moravians
  5. Anglican,
  6. Church of God,
  7. Seventh Day Adventist
  8. Seventh Day Baptist and
  9. Jehovah’s Witnesses.

In fact, there are over one hundred denominations in Jamaica, however, the Church of God and Seventh Day Adventist accounting for the major proportion of the group.

The one constant in all these congregations however is Christianity.

With the mixture of many cultures in the island, other non traditional religions were were introduced.

These include:

  • Rastafarianism

    Named after Ras Tafari, an African Prince who was eventually crowned King. This is a religion that originated here in Jamaica with strong African roots.

    One of the defining attributes of this belief is the non cutting of the hair. The emphasis on healthy eating and the smoking of marijuana are other notables.

  • Judaism

    This is based on a belief in God and Abraham whose life and relationship with God is recorded in the Old Testament of the Bible.

  • Revivalist/Pocomania

    These religions are heavily rooted in African rituals Singing, drumming, and the calling on spirits are attributes of these faiths.

  • Hinduism

    This came about by the employment of indentured labour from Asia, primarily India.

Religion here is truly a testament to the diversity of our people. Our motto could not be more fitting; after all, it is ‘Out of Many One People’.

jamaican_religion_catholic_church_falmouth jamaican_religion_lucky_valley_church
[selected pictures from flickr]

Back to top of Jamaican religion

And don't miss these related pages either:

Back to top of Jamaican religion

Return to Culture of Jamaica from Jamaican Religion
Return to My Island Jamaica Homepage from Jamaican Religion

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.

Thanks For Reading!
Like What You Just Read?

Please join me in my effort to share the beauty and uniqueness of Jamaica with the world. You can do so by sharing this insightful narrative on the social media of your choice and ask others to do the same (BELOW). 


Need Help?

We have a cherry list of top Jamaican companies that might be able to help you. Please click here to see them, our preferred partners and site sponsors.

Get Exclusive Updates & Tips!

You are also welcome to join my special friends list and receive exclusive updates (like this), tips, trivia and stories from lovers of Jamaica!

facts about jamaica book icon

I'll Gift You A FREE COPY of my eBook, 101 Intriguing Facts About Jamaica - just for subscribing!

Just enter your email & name below:

Top Of Page

I've created a Welcome Audio.

Just click the Play button below to listen.

Please subscribe here


Site Sponsors


Our Preferred Sponsors (below)

(Our Sponsorship Policy)

Click Here to Visit Our Sponsors' Page

Events Calendar
(click for info)

Jamaica Events Calendar

What's New?

Below is a list of the very latest articles I posted on the site.

Recent Articles

  1. Cars For Sale In Jamaica At Great Prices - Here's How To Find Them

    Oct 31, 15 10:36 AM

    Here's a real easy way to find the best cars for sale in Jamaica - at great prices

    Read More

  2. Best Jamaica Wedding Planning Specialist? Here's Our Recommendation

    Oct 28, 15 03:26 PM

    Remove the stress, let Tropical Weddings Jamaica takes care of your Jamaica wedding planning.

    Read More

  3. Jamaican Coffee Beans - A Brief History & Background

    Oct 26, 15 02:27 PM

    A brief history of the unrivalled Jamaican coffee beans

    Read More

  4. my short time in Jamaica - my review

    Oct 25, 15 09:35 AM

    I went to Jamaica about 4 years ago. I just loved it! The people were so friendly, so much more than St Kitts. Sorry but truth is truth. The food is

    Read More

Tips & Tricks For Your Jamaica Vacation!

Jamaica Travel Guide

Click Here To Get Your Copy



Friendly Links

  1. Our Partners & Friends
  2. Catcha Falling Star Villas
  3. Wade Hilton Jamaican Author
  4. The Jamaica Real Estate Guide
  5. Medicinal Herbs-4u.com
  6. DancehallReggaeWorld.com
Interested in becoming a partner? email me here

Buy Me A Drink

(Click on the drink below)