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Survey finds weak religious practice among Russian Orthodox

July 04, 2014

A survey published by the Russian news agency Interfax has found that the level of religious practice among the nation’s Orthodox population is weak.

68% of Russians surveyed describe themselves as Orthodox-- up from 52% in 1997-- while 6% said they were Muslims, 1% said they were non-Orthodox Christians, and 19% said they were not religious.

Among the Orthodox, only 8% attend church at least once a month, while 46% “never” attend church or go “less than once a year.” Only 4% receive Communion at least several times a year. Only 2% follow all of the church’s fasting laws, while 76% never fast.

In addition, 41% said they almost never pray, while 59% said they have never read the New Testament.


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  • Posted by: jg23753479 - Jul. 05, 2014 8:41 AM ET USA

    They say misery likes company, but even though these stats seem to make Catholics look good by comparison, what comfort can there be in this implosion of faith? Any society is far better off with a populace fully faithful to imperfect Christian beliefs than one indifferent to everything important. Think of how our own country fared under the sway of Puritan doctrines versus its nauseously immoral performance these days. Even the spiritual heirs of Cotton Mather were preferable to those of Dewey.

  • Posted by: fenton1015153 - Jul. 04, 2014 12:03 PM ET USA

    This is very shocking! It makes Catholics look positively faithful. Is this the effect of the long dark night of Communism under the Soviet Union? If so then what are the Catholics like that lived in Soviet Union? I met a Catholic priest from eastern Russia and he sounded like the Catholics were coming back strong but were very much attacked under the Soviet Union. We truly need to pray for all these poor people. Ask our Heavenly Mother to come to their aid now.