Malaysia Church History
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In western (peninsular) Malaysia native animist religions were replaced by Islam adherence in the 13th century. In eastern Malaysia on the island of Borneo, Muslim influence was concentrated in the Sultanate of Brunei. Most indigenous peoples retained their animist religions or were converted to Christianity. The colonial powers had little success in converting the Muslims to Christianity. Chinese immigrants to the area retained their traditional Buddhist, Taoist, Confucianist and Christian religions. Indian immigrants also brought their Hindu, Muslim or Christian religions with them.
Religious affiliation in Malaysia consists of 55% Muslims, 30% Buddhists, Taoists and other traditional Chinese religions, 7% Hindus, 7% traditional native religions, and 1% others including Christians. In Brunei religious affiliation is 72% Muslim, 13% Buddhist and other Chinese, 11% Christian and 4% Hindus and others.
- The Family History Department of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, “Family History Record Profile: Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei,” Word document, private files of the FamilySearch Content Strategy Team, 2000.