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Germany

Religion in Germany

Religion and Languages of GermanyAccording to Countryaah, about 70% of the German population belong to Christian churches; Christians are equally divided between Catholics and Protestants. About. 3.7% are Muslims. The Jewish minority counts just under 100,000. About 25% is considered to be without religious affiliation.

The majority of Protestants are members of evangelical union churches, which mainly include Lutheran churches (about 70%), but also many Reformed.

Religion and Languages of Germany

History

The ecclesiastical conditions in Germany are still largely determined by the principle of religious peace in Augsburg 1555: cuius regio - eius religio, the ruler (prince), to decide religion, ie whether it be Catholic, Lutheran or Reformed. This principle was confirmed by the peace in Westphalia in 1648. It has led to some areas being predominantly Lutheran, such as Schleswig-Holstein (about 87% Lutheran), while others are predominantly Catholic, like Bavaria (over 70% Catholic). Lasting effect was also given to Fredrik Wilhelm 3 of Prussia's 1817 injunction that Lutheran and Reformed churches should merge into a union. After this, in Germany, there are both Lutheran, Reformed and Unitarian churches, with the common denominator Evangelical.

After the 1918 revolution, the state and church were divorced, but the state still levies church taxes on members. The Land Churches (Landeskirchen) are bishopric / synodally organized. The churches have great support, although anti-church propaganda led to evictions in the 1920s and the "German faith movement" after 1933 led to new evictions. In 1939, however, the resignations represented only 7–8% of the population. After Hitler's takeover of power, the "German Christians" gained power in most of the country churches and in the new "national church", and a 12 year violent church struggle (see the church struggle).

After the collapse of Germany in 1945, many turned to the churches, without even mentioning any religious revival. In the summer of 1945, representatives of the evangelical churches adopted guidelines for a united evangelical church, the Evangelische Kirche in Deutschland (EKD), but this has instead become a union of independent national churches. The Lutheran churches are joined by Germany's United Evangelical-Lutheran Church (Vereinigte Evangelisch-Lutherische Kirche Deutschlands, VELKD). 1968–91, both EKD and VELKD were divided into an East German and a West German department.

Since the 1960s, churches have provided great humanitarian assistance to other countries, especially in the Third World (Brot für die Welt and the Catholic Caritas). The Protestant churches have membership in both the World Council of Churches and the Lutheran World Federation.

The atheist state ideology of former East Germany had a detrimental effect on religious life. By the merger with West Germany, almost 70% of the East German population was without membership in any Christian church.

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