JERUSALEM (JWN)—Israel’s Christian community numbers just about 155,000, or about 2 percent of the country’s population, but they stand out by their academic excellence and high employment. They also tend to have smaller families, according to data recently released by the Central Bureau of Statistics.
The CBS found that, of these Christians, 80 percent are Arabs and the rest are mainly Christians who immigrated with Jewish family members from the former Soviet Union.
These figures include only local Christians, not the nearly quarter of a million migrant laborers.
One of the outstanding statistics about Israel’s Christian community is its country-leading rate of earning a high school matriculation certificate, an essential step to university. In the 2010 school year, 63% of the Christian 12th-grade students earned a matriculation certificate compared with 46% of the Muslims, 55% of the Druse, and 58% of the Jews. Among Christian college students, 11.4% were studying law. Medicine is another popular field.
Christian families have fewer children than other Israelis. In 2011, a Christian woman could expect to bear 2.1 children during her lifetime. In comparison, a Muslim woman could expect to bear 3.8, a Jewish woman 3.0, and a Druse woman 2.5 children.
Israeli Christians are also industrious. In 2010, 64.2 percent of Christian men had jobs in the civilian workforce, compared to 62.4 percent of Jewish men.