The Christian population in Israel is slowly growing, and their educational achievements are rivaling those of the majority Jewish population, according to figures released this week by Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics.

The data revealed that 70.9 percent of Christian high school students in Israel achieve college-entry matriculation grades, which is slightly higher than the figure among Israeli Jews (70.6 percent).

Among Israel’s Druze the figure is 63.7 percent, according to the report, while among the Muslim population it is 45.2 percent.

Three out of four Christian students who achieve a master’s degree, or 74 percent, are women, as are 63 percent of Christian doctoral students.

Some 177,000 Christians live in Israel, comprising roughly 2 percent of the population, and of those around 77.5 percent are Arabs, consisting of around 7.2 percent of Israel’s Arab community. Of those Arab Christians, 70.6 percent live in the Galilee and northern cities.

The largest Christian community in Israel, some 21,900 strong, live in Nazareth, Jesus’s childhood hometown. The second largest Christian community (16,100) resides in Haifa, followed by Jerusalem (12,700) and Shfaram (10,300).

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