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Survey: Romanians rarely attend religious services, although they consider being religious people


Romanians say they rarely attend religious services in churches, although they consider themselves religious people, according to the “Religious Life Barometer” of December 2021, launched  by the Institute of Political Sciences and International Relations of the Romanian Academy and LARICS Center of Sociological Research.


According to the survey, presented on Thursday in the Romanian Academy auditorium by Darie Cristea, LARICS CEO, Romanians answered the question “Do you consider being a religious person?” as  follows: “Certainly”-56.7%, “I would say yes”-26.7%, “I would say not”- 11.5%, “Certainly not”-5% and Ï don't know”-0.6%.

Regardless of confession or religion, Romanians believe in God (89.8%) on a scale from 1 to 10, where 1 means not important and 10 means extremely important, 10 being indicated by 42.9% of respondents. 


However, Romanians rarely attend religious service in the church specific of the religion: occasionally for certain celebrations, familu events (31.2%); once a week or more often (23.4%), only for important holidays (22.2%); 16% of respondents attend church once a month and 7% never do.


53.9% use to say prayers daily or almost daily, while 18.1% do it very seldom, eventually in more complicated moments.


The question “Can you give us details on your attitude towards religion?”, addressed to participants in the survey who declared they were not religious, 91.5% of respondents said they were rather indifferent to religion, and only 7.9% said they were against religion.


Romanians consider that churches/ religious denominations should be more interested in helping sick or needy persons (94%), or in religious matters (83.6%). 70.5% of respondents think churches should be more present in public life, education, culture, the media, while 54.1% say they should more critical towards opinion leaders and politicians who say they are against faith and religion. 

67.1% say that religious education in schools is necessary, 23.4% say it should be made only if parents request it, while 8.9% of respondents consider there should not be any religious education in schools, while 0.6% did not know or did not answer.

Referring to the relation between state and religious denominations in Romania, 43.1% consider it correct and balanced, 33.2% say the state is trying to subordinate and limit denominations, 19.6% say that “denominations are trying to take over state attributions”, 4.2% do not know or would not answer.


Asked about the state attitude towards the church during the pandemic, 41.1% of Romanians say it is normal that activities of churches and religious denominations had restrictions; 35.4% say the state had infringed the religious freedom of denominations; 21.2% say the state has collaborated very well with churches and communicated very well the measures taken, while 2.4% did not know or would not answer.


47.7% of respondents consider “natural in democracy” that opinion leaders expressed publicly against the church and religion, while 60.9% say it is natural they should be in favor of the church and religion.


The survey was made by the Laboratory for the Analysis of Information War and Strategic Communication (LARICS) in partnership with the State Secretariat for Denominations and the Institute of Political Sciences and International Relations (ISPRI).


Survey data were gathered between December 3 and 14, on a sample of 1,001 persons, representative for Romania's population, 18, or over 18 years old.


The method used was that of survey based on a phone questionnaire made in all Romanian counties and in Bucharest. The maximum data error  admitted  was 3%, for a confidence degree of 95%. The sample was validated based on official data of the National Statistics Institute.