Voodoo Recognized as an Official National Religion of Haiti

Vodou is henceforth to be fully recognised as a religion, empowered to fulfil its mission throughout the country consistent with the constitution and the laws of the Republic, pending the adoption of a law relating to its legal status.

The presidential decree dated April 4, 2003 relating to this decision indicates that all Vodou chiefs, temple officials, officials at a sacred site, as well as all Vodou organisations or associations are empowered to file a request for recognition by the Ministry of Culture and Religious Affairs.

Haiti's Catholic President, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, took the decision earlier in April which means that voodoo ceremonies such as marriages now have equal standing with Catholic ones.

The mixture of gods and goddesses and Catholic saints is an integral part of Haitian life - one common saying is that Haitians are 70% Catholic, 30% Protestant, and 100% voodoo