Religious pluralism in Quebec



The research team Religion et modernité au Québec (Religion and Modernity in Quebec), directed by Deirdre Meintel from Université de Montréal, is venturing into the sensitive issue of religion in Quebec. In addition to identifying the many religious groups that are evolving in our society, the team is seeking to clarify the meaning of the religious experience for the members of these groups. 

The first stage of this project focused on bridging the gap in our empirical knowledge of the new religious groups that have appeared in Quebec since the 1960s. The research team documented Shamanic, Evangelical, Hindu, Buddhist, Muslim and Catholic groups, resulting in more than 80 studies, 30 of which provided an in-depth look at various religious groups. 

The project continued with surveys of members and leaders of these religious groups, and an analysis of their activities and practices. The results shed new light on religious pluralism, contemporary Catholicism and the role of religion, particularly in the regions of Montreal, Estrie, Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean and the Laurentians, providing a comprehensive portrait of the province's religious landscape. The public can learn about this portrait by reading the report summaries provided on the research group's website. 

This new knowledge is proving to be extremely practical for those who work with people from different religious communities on a daily basis, especially in education and health. It has been shared with many community groups and religion teachers associations. The research team is currently working on a practical manual for the teaching of religion in schools, in light of the testimonies obtained from community workers and teachers. The team also plans to provide digital references of works that could be useful to the latter in their working practices. Some members of the research team even work as consultants in health and social services centres. 

The research team is contributing to the creation of harmonious social relationships between people with different spiritual beliefs.

 

Team

Équipe de recherche Religion et modernité au Québec

Director

Deirdre Meintel, Université de Montréal

Regular members

  • Khadiyatoulah Fall, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi 
  • François Gauthier, Université du Québec à Montréal 
  • Claude Gélinas, Université de Sherbrooke 
  • Marie Nathalie LeBlanc, Université Concordia