Every country has a specific religion that most of its citizens believe in. There are different branches and sects as well. When visiting other countries, we should be aware of the religions that each belief in as well. We are looking at Austria today to see what most of the population believes in as far as religion goes.
For centuries, Austrian citizens have been influenced by the Catholic religion and its traditions. There is religious freedom in Austria today. Everyday business, life, and legislation are deemed as secular here. About three-fourths of the country is Roman Catholic in faith. This number has dropped significantly over the past twenty years. Migration plays a huge role in the religious faiths changing in numbers as well. Some other religions here are Protestant, Muslim, and Christian Orthodox, Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, and Jewish.
The Catholic church in Austria had many members in it during 2017, around 60 percent of Austrians were Catholic. The church has two archbishops, who are the ones who answer to the Pope. There is also another branch of Catholics who have started their own organization. This is called, Call to Disobedience. It is a movement in Austria, which has rebellious or nonconforming priests that are in favor women priests, married priests, letting divorced and remarried members receive communion.
The Roman Catholic religion is the oldest religion in Austria. Most of the Catholics in Austria still practice all their old traditions and go to mass weekly, sometimes more. Vienna was once the capital of the Holy Roman Empire; therefore, the religion is still quite strong in this area. In Vienna, there are still beautiful cathedrals, shrines, and monasteries. The urban areas of Austria do not have as many religious affiliations to the Catholic church though.
Austria also has a whopping 12% of their population listed as Atheists. Apparently, across Europe in the last few years, being a Pagan has started a movement, which is spreading. No one is sure of the cause, but some people say it because of the church taxation. Austria does have religious freedom rights, so anyone can practice what they want here.
Eastern Orthodox Christian
Six percent of the country is Eastern Orthodox Christian. This is mostly because of the migration of the Southern Slavic people coming to Austria. They came from the Balkans. The Serbs are part of the biggest group in this area of the country. Immigrants from Yugoslavia are also a part of this group.
One religion that may surprise many people is the Sunni Muslims. This group has grown tremendously in Austria. There are about 6% of the population who recognize themselves as Sunni Muslims. Austria is one of the first countries to accept Muslims into their country. Many of the Muslims who are in Austria, are there for work factors. Those who are foreign workers do not practice their religion as often due to work hours. Austria privatized mosques and imams in 2015, due to rising concern about extreme Islam.