Religion doesn’t play much of a role to most Danes – The Post

Religion doesn’t play much of a role to most Danes

Just 17 percent deemed it an important part of their lives

The flock is thinning out in Denmark (photo: Pixabay)
November 7th, 2016 9:11 am| by Christian W
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A new Epinion survey on behalf of national broadcaster Danmarks Radio (DR) reveals that religion means little to most Danes.

READ MORE: More Danes go to church on All Saints’ Day than Easter Sunday

Just 17 percent of the respondents said religion was important to their lives. Fully 49 percent disagreed with the statement that “religion is very important to my life”, and a further 30 percent were ambivalent.

“Religion isn’t very important to the Danes, and we know that from other surveys too,” Brian Arly Jacobsen, an associate professor of religious sociology at the University of Copenhagen, told DR Nyheder.”

“The vast majority of the doubters are not religious or atheist at all, but simply don’t care. It’s a growing group – in Denmark and in the rest of the world.”

READ MORE: Copenhagen to get religion-free ceremonial hall for special rituals

National identity
A survey from 2008 showed that 30 percent of Danes found religion to be an important aspect of their lives – nearly twice as many as DR’s new survey.

But despite only 17 percent finding religion to be of importance, 76 percent of Danes are still members of the Church of Denmark. But according to Jacobsen, that’s down to culture, not religion.

“For many Danes, their relationship with the church has more to do with a national identity rather than a religious one,” he said.

Earlier this year, figures from the Church Ministry revealed that the number of baptisms in Denmark has dwindled by about 20 percent since 1990.