Christians in Germany 2006
"The Lord your God you shall follow..." (Deuteronomy 13:4)
At the end of 2006, around two thirds of the population of Germany was Christian. The Protestant church has 25.1 million members. The situation with regard to church affiliation differs considerably between the new federal states [former East Germany, trans. note] and the old.
The considerable political pressure to leave the church exerted especially in the early years of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) led to a decline in church membership, which was further accentuated by the banning of baptisms. In the case of West Germany, meanwhile, greater fiscal pressure led to ever greater numbers of people leaving the church. The arrival of non-Christian immigrants has also had an impact on the proportion of the population who are members of Christian churches. Today 73 percent of the resident population belongs to a Christian church. In the eastern part of Germany, the number is a mere 26 percent. The average for all of Germany is 64 percent.
Despite differences in the way they have evolved, majority churches everywhere have survived. The children of Christian parents continue to be "born into" the church through baptism, generally in their first year. In particular, the participation of churches in training and educational structures, as well as their involvement in the cultural and social spheres, testifies to the importance of churches for the community. As always, Christian social ethics continue to play a significant role in society.
|Christians as a percentage of total population||63.7 %|
|Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD), total||25,100,727|
|In member churches in western Germany||21,815,698|
|In member churches in eastern Germany||3,285,029|
|Protestant free churches||326,467|
|Miscellaneous Christian denominations||43,264|