Austria
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  Preferred Religion (2015)1: Catholic

  Majority Religion (2015)2: Catholic (60.4%)

Religious Adherents, (2015)2

Austria Western Europe World
Christian (all denominations combined) 67.6% 62.9% 29.9%
 
  • Catholic
  • 60.4% 43.3% 15%
     
  • Protestant
  • 3.8% 16.3% 5.6%
     
  • Orthodox
  • 2.4% 1.4% 3%
     
  • Pentecostal
  • 0.3% 0.5% 2.8%
     
  • Other and Unknown Christian
  • 0.8% 1.4% 2.3%
    Muslim (all denominations combined) 7.3% 6.1% 22.8%
     
  • Sunni Muslim
  • 7.3% 5.7% 19%
     
  • Other and Unknown Muslim
  • < 0.1% < 0.1% 0.3%
    Buddhist (all denominations combined) 0.1% 0.6% 6.6%
    Jewish 0.1% 0.4% 0.2%
    Other Religionist 0.2% 0.4% 0.2%
    Not Religious (incl. Atheist) 18.2% 27.4% 12%
    Unknown 6.4% 2% 4.8%

    Religious Demography3

    The country has an area of 32,369 square miles and a population of 8.3 million. During previous reporting periods the country experienced some immigration from countries such as Turkey and Bosnia-Herzegovina, which increased the number of Muslims. The Muslim community more than doubled between 1991 and 2001 to 339,000, or 4.2 percent of the population. Estimates for 2007 indicate that there are approximately 400,000 Muslims in the country. In recent reporting periods immigration has slowed down due to the gradual introduction of a quota system in the late 1990s.

    According to the 2001 census, membership in major religious groups is as follows: Roman Catholic Church, 74 percent; Lutheran and Presbyterian Churches (Evangelical Church-Augsburger and Helvetic confessions), 4.7 percent; Muslim community, 4.2 percent; Jewish community, 0.1 percent; Eastern Orthodox (Russian, Greek, Serbian, Romanian, and Bulgarian), 2.2 percent; other Christian churches, 0.9 percent; and other non-Christian religious groups, 0.2 percent. Atheists account for 12 percent, and 2 percent do not indicate a religious affiliation.

    According to a poll by the German market research institute FESSEL-GfK conducted in June and July 2007, 81 percent of respondents state that they belong to a church or religious group. Of that number, 2 percent attend services more than once a week, 10 percent attend weekly, 9 percent attend a minimum of once a month, 26 percent attend several times a year (on special occasions), and 53 percent nearly never attend.

    The provinces of Carinthia (10.3 percent) and Burgenland (13.3 percent) have higher percentages of Protestants than the national average of 4.7 percent. The number of Muslims is higher than the national average of 4.2 percent in Vienna (7.8 percent) and the province of Vorarlberg (8.4 percent), where industry draws a disproportionately higher number of guest workers from Turkey and the former Yugoslavia.

    The vast majority of groups termed "sects" by the Government are small organizations with fewer than one hundred members. Among the larger groups is the Church of Scientology, which claims between 5,000 and 6,000 members, and the Unification Church, with approximately 700 adherents. Other groups termed "sects" include Divine Light Mission, Eckankar, Hare Krishna, the Holosophic Community, the Osho Movement, Sahaja Yoga, Sai Baba, Sri Chinmoy, Transcendental Meditation, Center for Experimental Society Formation, Fiat Lux, Universal Life, and The Family.


    Sources

    1.  The Religious Characteristics of States Dataset Project: Government Religious Preference (GRP) measures government-level favoritism toward, and disfavor against, 30 religious denominations. A series of ordered categorical variables index the state's institutional favoritism in 28 different ways. The variables are combined to form five composite indices for five broad components of state-religion: official status, religious education, financial support, regulatory burdens, and freedom of practice. The five components' composites in turn are further combined into a single composite score, the GRP score. The RCS Data Project would like to acknowledge, recognize, and express our deepest gratitude for the significant contributions of Todd M. Johnson the principal investigator of the World Christian Database and the co-principal investigator of the World Religion Database.

    2.  The Religious Characteristics of States Dataset Project: Demographics reports the estimates of religious demographics, both country by country and region by region. The RCS was created to fulfill the unmet need for a dataset on the religious dimensions of countries of the world, with the state-year as the unit of observation. It estimates populations and percentages of adherents of 100 religious denominations including second level subdivision within Christianity and Islam. The RCS Data Project would like to acknowledge, recognize, and express our deepest gratitude for the significant contributions of Todd M. Johnson the principal investigator of the World Christian Database and the co-principal investigator of the World Religion Database.

    3.  The U.S. State Department's International Religious Freedom Report is submitted to Congress annually by the Department of State in compliance with Section 102(b) of the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA) of 1998. This report supplements the most recent Human Rights Reports by providing additional detailed information with respect to matters involving international religious freedom. It includes individual country chapters on the status of religious freedom worldwide. A dataset with these and the other international measures highlighted on the country pages can be downloaded from this website. These State Department reports are open source.

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