Religion

Arabic faith

The Arabic speaking communities in Australia are of distinct and diverse religious backgrounds: the majority are either Muslims or Christians and smaller numbers represent minority religions such as the Druze, Mandaeans, Alewis and Yazidis. Although not all Arabic speaking people are devout followers of their religious faith, the overwhelming majority have religion as a key and central part of their lives.

Although Muslim immigrants have a special place in Australia’s history as the first cameleers (the Afghan cameleers of the 19th century), the early migrants arriving from the Arab world were predominantly Christian. They formed Arabic speaking Christian communities from the late 19th century onwards and were mainly Lebanese Maronite Catholics and Orthodox Christians (Antiochian and Coptic). It was not until the late 1970s and early 1980s that large numbers of Arabic speaking Muslims started arriving and settling in Australia, as well as Arabic speakers of diverse minority religions.

We provide here a brief outline of the key aspects of the diverse religions followed by Arabic speaking communities in Australia. We also provide you with brief demographic information about each religious community in Victoria and links for further information. Our Directory includes diverse places of worship for each religious community.

Further Reading & Materials