Norwegians’ faith in God dwindles / News / The Foreigner

Norwegians’ faith in God dwindles. Only four in ten say they’re believers. Religion is taking increasingly more of a back seat in Norway. According to the research company Synovate’s comprehensive Norwegian Monitoring Survey, 53 percent affirmed they believed in God in 1985, whilst only 43 percent do today. Ottar Hellevik, Professor of Political Science, says researchers have posed the same question every other year. He explains this means the figures are more reliable than sporadic opinion polls, and the trend is also age-related.

religion, christianity, belief, norwegians, church, faith



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Norwegians’ faith in God dwindles

Published on Monday, 5th April, 2010 at 08:11 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .

Only four in ten say they’re believers.

Stavkirken, Savjord, Beiarn
Stavkirken, Savjord, Beiarn
Photo: Einar B. Skomsvoll/Wikimedia Commons


Age

Religion is taking increasingly more of a back seat in Norway. According to the research company Synovate’s comprehensive Norwegian Monitoring Survey, 53 percent affirmed they believed in God in 1985, whilst only 43 percent do today.

Ottar Hellevik, Professor of Political Science, says researchers have posed the same question every other year. He explains this means the figures are more reliable than sporadic opinion polls, and the trend is also age-related.

“It’s the eldest who believe in God the most. Belief decreases amongst the population as the elderly die,” he tells NTB.

Extremes

But though there are more who don’t believe in God, an increasing number also describe themselves as practising Christians.

Hellevik says the size of this group has grown over the years to today’s 26 percent. Things have become polarised.

“This means the extremes are becoming stronger. There are more who don’t believe in God, and there are also more who have strong religious convictions.

Enrichment

The professor also believes the results show Norwegians are becoming less of a xenophobic people.

55 percent say they think immigrants enrich the culture, as opposed to 35 percent in 1993, when researchers first started posing the question. Today, 25 percent view them as a threat.

The results also show positivity towards other religions than Christianity. 49 percent were negative towards having a Muslim religious community in Norway 17 years ago, whereas the figure has sunk by 10 percent today.

“Norwegians are about to become more of a satisfied and less worried people. In 1993, only 14 percent said they both liked and found having a Muslim religious community important. Now it’s 27 percent. This means the gap between those who are for and against is narrowing,” says Hellevik.



Published on Monday, 5th April, 2010 at 08:11 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .

This post has the following tags: religion, christianity, belief, norwegians, church, faith.





  
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