Muslims outnumber Catholics, says Vatican

The number of Muslims has surpassed that of Roman Catholics for the first time, the Vatican said. While Catholics make up 17.4 percent of the world’s population, Muslims account for 19.2% – this according to the Vatican’s new statistics yearbook, based on figures from 2006. Monsignor Vittoro Formenti, who edited the yearbook, cites this due to declining birth rates among Catholics and the rise in the number of children had by Muslim families. Formenti said that the information on Muslim numbers had been released by the United Nations, while the Vatican’s data on Catholics was based on questionnaires sent out to dioceses around the world.