More members in religious communities
Culture and recreation;Immigration and immigrants
trosamf, Religious communities and life stance communities, members, religions (for example christianity, islam, buddism), religious community, Norwegian Humanist AssociationReligion and life stance , Culture and recreation, Culture and recreation, Immigration and immigrants

Religious communities and life stance communities1 January 2001



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More members in religious communities

During the last year the number of members of religious and philosophical communities outside the state Church of Norway has increased slightly. The number has risen by about 7 800 members to just above 362 000.

The membership of the registered religious and philosophical communities outside the Church of Norway increases most, while there has been a decline in the membership of the unregistered communities. All figures are from communities receiving state subsidies. At 1 January 2001 the registered communities had approximately 268 000 members which represent a rise of 5,2 per cent. Nearly 24 000 were members of unregistered communities and 70 300 of the secular Human Ethical Union.

The Christian communities are largest

The Christian congregations are the largest group outside the state Church of Norway with roughly 210 000 members receiving state subsidies. Pentecostal congregations with about 44 000 members and the Roman Catholic Church with 42 500 members are the largest Christian communities although both had a slight decrease in the memberships the latest year, respectively 4 and 1 per cent. The largest climb this year among the Christian registered communities had the Greek Orthodox Church with an increase of 40 per cent, close to 3 300 members.

The Islamic communities with state subsidies accounted approximately 62 700 members. About 62 000 were members of registered communities, while just over 700 members of unregistered communities. The rise of membership of Islamic communities was just over 11 per cent from January 2000. The increase occurred in the registered communities.

More members registered in Human Ethical Union

The Human Ethical Union amounted 70 300 members receiving state subsidies at 1 January 2001. This increase is just under 4 per cent compared with last year. The Human Ethical Union has local chapters in every county, but most of the members live in Oslo and Akershus county, nearly 26 000 members in 16 local chapters. This rise does not necessarily reflect a real increase of the membership but rather a change in the way to register members. Particularly the registering of children is influenced of this fact.

41 per cent belong to Oslo and Akershus county

Almost 41 per cent of the members in religious and philosophical communities outside the state Church of Norway are registered in Oslo and Akershus. This number accounts for just over 15 per cent of the population in these two counties, while approximately 8 per cent of the whole population. The corresponding figure for Sogn og Fjordane in western Norway is still the lowest with only 1 per cent. The figures could represent a source of error for the counties because some communities only have congregations registered in Oslo and Akershus and the members are inhabitants in other counties.

Church of Norway - more couples joined in holy matrimony

Church of Norway statistics for 2000 showed that the number of marriages performed by the church were 14 000. This number is about the same level as in 1997 and accounts an increase of just over 10 per cent from 1999. The diocese of Hamar had the greatest jump with 18 per cent more church weddings than in 1999. Over the course of the last year 48 000 were baptized in the Church of Norway and 37 300 confirmed. These figures remain stable. The statistics showed that in the year 2000 approximately 4 500 people resigned from the church of Norway, while about 800 enrolled. The latest statistics for the Church of Norway showed that total membership was more than 3.8 million equivalent to about 86 per cent of the population.