Religious Adherents, 2010 (World Christian Database)1
The country has an area of 16,639 square miles and a population of 5.4 million. Based on official statistics from January 2008, 82 percent of the population belongs to the official Evangelical Lutheran Church. Although only 3 percent of church members attend services regularly, most members utilize the church for weddings, funerals, baptisms, confirmations, and religious holidays.
As a result of immigration trends, the second largest religious community is Muslim, constituting 3.7 percent of the population (210,000). Danish Muslim communities tend to concentrate in certain neighborhoods such as Norrebro in Copenhagen. Groups that constitute less than 1 percent of the population include Catholics (35,000), Jehovah's Witnesses (15,000), Jews (7,000), Baptists (5,500), Pentecostals (5,000), and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) (4,500). There are also many communities with fewer than 3,000 members, including Seventh-day Adventists, the Catholic Apostolic Church, the Salvation Army, Methodists, Anglicans, and Russian Orthodox. The German minority in southern Jutland and other non-Danish communities (particularly Scandinavian groups) have their own religious groups.
Official attendance figures indicate a shift from the Evangelical Lutheran Church to other denominations, with Evangelical Lutheran membership falling from more than 90 percent of the Danish population in the 1980s to a record-low level of 82 percent in 2008. Additionally, attendance figures among members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church have fallen to record-low levels as well, especially among young persons. A February 2008 Gallup poll concluded that more than 45 percent of Evangelical Lutheran church members had not attended a religious service in the last year, compared to only 31 percent of members polled in the first year of the survey in 2003. A June 11, 2007 press report indicated that "a quarter to a third of all people in church in Copenhagen any given Sunday morning are attending a foreign-run service," according to an Evangelical Lutheran bishop.
The European headquarters of the Church of Scientology is located in Copenhagen, although it has not officially applied to the Government for recognition as a religion.
Note: The World Christian Database (WCD) estimates, used in the Religious Adherents section above, count each person as belonging to a maximum of one religious group. For more information, see the WCD methodology document. The U.S. State Department's International Religious Freedom report estimates, used in the Religious Demography section, use less restrictive criteria in which a person who identifies with more than one religion is classified as a follower of each. In certain cases (such as Japan and other nations with strong folk religion traditions), this can cause counts to vary widely between estimates. Users are advised to consult the relevant source documents before determining which counts to cite.
1. The World Christian Database (WCD) is based on the 2600-page award-winning World Christian Encyclopedia and World Christian Trends, first published in 1982 and revised in 2001. This extensive work on World religion is now completely updated and integrated into the WCD online database. Designed for both the casual user and research scholar, information is readily available on religious activities, growth rates, religious literature, worker activity, and demographic statistics. Additional secular data is incorporated on population, health, education, and communications. A dataset with these and the other international measures highlighted on the country pages can be downloaded from this website. Used with permission.
2. 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.