Danish Religion

danish religion

The official Danish religion is the Evangelical Lutheran church, which is state supported. Even though most Danes are Lutherans, only about 6% attend church on a regular basis. Nearly 85% of the Danish population belongs to the Evangelical Lutheran Church, while the other 15% consists of many other religions including Jewish, Catholic and Islamic.

 You can learn more about Evangelical Lutheran beliefs here.

Since the Danes are descended from the Vikings, there still exists a small percentage Danes who still follow the old Norse religion, represented by the gods Freyja, Thor, Odin and Loki.

There are plenty of churches in Denmark, many dating back to the early 1500s.  If you wish some historical Danish religion you need to visit some of Denmark's spectacular churches:

  •  Ribe Kirke in Ribe
  • Aarhus Domkirke in Arhus
  • Roskilde Kirke in Roskilde
  • and possibly Grundtvigs Kirke in Copenhagen (since it is the largest in Denmark) 

 But there are so many to choose from.

The most popular church-going days are Christmas and Easter. Even though the regular attendance is pretty low, 5 - 10% are regular church-goers, yet most Danes contribute a portion of their salary to the church in a form of voluntary tax called the kirkeskat which is usually about 1% of their annual salary.

You have to opt out of the Folkekirke if you wish to not have the church tax taken out of your paycheck. Most Danes continue to pay the tax. One reason is that it contributes to the upkeep of the many historic churches.

If you wish to learn more about the history of Danish religion, you should visit some of the Danish historic sites, where you will see lots of evidence of the early beliefs in the Nordic gods such as Odin. It was not until Harlad Bluetooth's reign in 965 that the first signs of Christianity were seen in Denmark. Later in 1536, King Christian III made Denmark Protestant and is represented by the only official state church in Europe called the Folkekirke.

Churches today represent a large tourist attraction due to their age and various styles of architecture. The photo above is of Roskilde Cathedral, which is a marvel to visit. As you walk across the cathedral floor, look down and you will find out that you are walking on the tombs of famous kings.

Another beautiful church to visit is in Arhus and is the longest and tallest cathedral in Denmark. You can read more about this historic symbol of Danish religion here.

Church Services in Copenhagen

If you are living or visiting Copenhagen, I suggest you take in a Danish religion church service at one of the many historic churches in town. Services may be in Danish, but there is a lot of singing involved too and you will surely enjoy the historic surroundings as well as the service.

The Marble Church, next to Amalienborg Palace, has regular service each Sunday at 1030.

The Vor Frue Kirke in Nørregade also has 3 services on Sunday: 1000, 1400 and 1700. If you can not catch the Sunday service, try the one at 1100 on Fridays or the short service they have each morning at 0810.

Even though there is no service the Cathedral and the The Church of the Holy Ghost located on Strøget are open for meditation on Friday evenings from 2000 to 2400.

Other denominational services are as follows:

Anglican: St. Albans at Churchillparken, 0900 and 1030 Sundays (in English)

Baptist:  First Intl Baptist / Kristuskirken, Baggesengsgade 7, 2200 Copenhagen N at 1530 Sundays

Buddist: Buddist Centre, 56 Svanemøllevej, 2100 Copenhagen Ø at 2000

Catholic: Sankt Ansgar Kirke, Bredgade 64, 1260 Copenhagen K at 1100 Sunday and Saturday at 1700.

Jesu Hjerte (SacredHeart), Stenosgade 4, 1616 Copenhagen V - 1100 on Sunday

Sakraments Kirke, 27C Nørrebrogade, 2200 Copenhagen N 0930 Sunday (English at 1800)

St Augustines, Jagtvej 183, 2100 København Ø Tlf: 3916 2440

Christian: Intl Christian Community Church,Ryesgade 68, 2100 Copenhagen NV 

Copenhagen Christian Center, Drejervej 15, 2400 Copenhagen - service Sunday 1330

Christian Science: Kristen Videnskabs Kirke , St. Kongensgade 23, 1264 Copenhagen K at 1030 Sundays

Hinduism: There are no temples inside Copenhagen, but several around the country. Check out  www.hinduismen.dk for more details.

Islamic: Dansk Islamisk Center på Baggesensgade 4C, 2200 Copenhagen N

Jehovah's Witness: Jehovas Vidner, Engvej 151, 2300 Copenhagen S, Denmark

Jewish: Synagogen, Krystalgade 12, Copenhagen K - daily service at 0700

Methodist: Jerusalemskirken, Rigensgade 19, 1316 Copenhagen K at 1100 on Sunday

Mormoms: Jesu Kristi Kirke, Kretavej 37, 2300 Copenhagen S - Sunday at 1000

Newfrontiers: Copenhagen Community Church, Nørre Farimagsgade 45, 1364 Copenhagen - service Sunday at 1100

Quakers: Kvækerne Vennernes Religiøse, Drejervej 17, 2400 Copenhagen NV at 1000 Sunday

Orthodox: Skt. Aleksander Nevskij Kirke, Bredgade 53, 1260 Copenhagen K - Sunday 1000
Guds­mo­ders Beskyt­telse, Blom­ster­væn­get 10, 2800 Kgs. Lyngby - Sunday 0930

Pentecostal: Hillsong Church Copenhagen, Bremen Theater, Nyropsgade 39, 1602 Copenhagen  - Service every Sunday at 1100 & 1800

Seventh Day Adventists:  SDA International Church, Svanevej 10, 2400 Copenhagen N at 1115 on Saturday

If you live outside of Copenhagen, contact one of the churches above for help located a church of your choosing in your local area.  Danish Religion can be found all over Denmark. You can find photos of all the churches in Copenhagen here.

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