Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Friday 17 September |
Saint of the Day: St. Hildegard of Bingen
home iconArt & Culture
line break icon

Iceland’s Catholic population is on the rise

Public Domain

J-P Mauro - published on 10/25/19

Iceland's progressive culture is contrasted by its Catholic growth.

The nation of Iceland has been found to have experienced a minor Catholic surge in the last 25 years. In 1994, it was estimated that only 1% or less of the population was Catholic, but a 2019 report cited their numbers at 4%. This increase has puzzled Lea Müller, of the Reykjavík Grapevine, who noted that Iceland is consistently found to be among the top 10 most progressive countries.

Müller suggests the reason for this increase revolves around Iceland’s continuous economic growth in recent years. With a number of expanding industries, Iceland has a surplus of jobs which has drawn immigrants from predominantly Catholic countries. Poland in particular has been estimated to have supplied 40% of Iceland’s immigrant population, followed by Lithuania. It is estimated that nearly all of Iceland’s Polish community is Catholic.

In Reykjavík, the Catholic church is bursting at the seams during Sunday Mass, but the priests continue to bring more and more of the community into the fold, as the church receives government funding based on its congregation.

While the Catholic population is growing, Lutheranism — historically the #1 religion in Iceland — is falling by the wayside. In the 1990s it was estimated that 90% of the country was Lutheran. More recent studies have cited that number down to 64%. While Catholicism is on the rise, religion as a whole in the progressive country is diminishing, although the reason for this decrease is unclear.

Tags:
CatholicFaith

Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
1
Kathleen N. Hattrup
Pope considers what to do with pro-abortion Catholic politicians
2
communion
Philip Kosloski
How receiving Holy Communion can drive away demons
3
Berthe and Marcel
Lauriane Vofo Kana
This couple has the longest marriage in France
4
CROSS
Philip Kosloski
Why is the feast of the Holy Cross celebrated on September 14?
5
Mathilde De Robien
How a lost masterpiece of sacred art was discovered thanks to chi...
6
Kathleen N. Hattrup
On same-sex unions, Pope says Church doesn’t have power to change...
7
SAINT ANTHONY OF PADUA
Philip Kosloski
This prayer to St. Anthony is said to have “never been known to f...
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.