Religious Change and Continuity in a Danish Town: Results from a Mapping Project
Local changes and global patterns – mapping congregations in the city of Aarhus.
This article will present the results of a mapping project from 2012 of religious groups in Aarhus, the second largest city in Denmark. The mapping project followed up on a similar project from 2002, and was therefore able to document how religion changes in a specific area in relation to over-all trends of religious transformation. Data concerning the religious groups was collected through interviews and participant observation and analyzed both through a comparison with the previous study and in relation to theoretical questions concerning the transformation of religion, e.g. globalization and growing religious diversity. This article will focus specifically on developments within Christian congregations and the question of local transformations in relation to regional and global patterns of religion. In Aarhus, as in Denmark generally, the primary numerical divide is between the majority church (the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark) and the minority groups. Among the minority groups a key tendency is how globalization affects the religious landscape both in the form of changes in older congregations, e.g. through global Christian networks, and in the form of new congregations arriving in the city. Among the new arrivals, the two primary tendencies are a growth in Orthodox and Pentecostal congregations.
KeywordsMapping projects Methods Religious diversity Minority religion Christianity
- Ahlin, Lars, Jørn Borup, Marianne Qvortrup Fibiger, Brian Arly Jacobsen, Marie Vejrup Nielsen. 2013. Religion i Aarhus 2013: En kortlægning af religion og spiritualitet. Aarhus University: Center for Samtidsreligion, Denmark.Google Scholar
- Borup, Jørn. 2013. Buddhisme i Aarhus. In Religion i Aarhus 2013: En kortlægning af religion og spiritualitet, ed. Lars Ahlin, Jørn Borup, Marianne Qvortrup Fibiger, Brian Arly Jacobsen, and Marie Vejrup Nielsen, 246–253. Denmark: Aarhus University: Center for Samtidsreligion.Google Scholar
- Fibiger, Marianne Q., ed. 2004. Religiøs mangfoldighed – en kortlægning af religion og spiritualitet i Århus. Aarhus: Systime.Google Scholar
- ———. 2013. Hinduisme og hinduinspirerede grupper i Aarhus. In Religion i Aarhus 2013: En kortlægning af religion og spiritualitet, ed. Lars Ahlin, Jørn Borup, Marianne Qvortrup Fibiger, Brian Arly Jacobsen, and Marie Vejrup Nielsen, 291–297. Denmark: Aarhus University: Center for Samtidsreligion.Google Scholar
- Jacobsen, Brian A. 2013. Muslimer i Aarhus. In Religion i Aarhus 2013: En kortlægning af religion og spiritualitet, ed. Lars Ahlin, Jørn Borup, Marianne Qvortrup Fibiger, Brian Arly Jacobsen, and Marie Vejrup Nielsen, 174–181. Denmark: Aarhus University: Center for Samtidsreligion.Google Scholar
- Jenkins, Philip. 2002. The next Christendom – the coming of global Christianity. USA: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Martin, David. 2002. Pentecostalism: The world their parish. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers.Google Scholar
- Nielsen, Marie Vejrup, ed. 2014. Religion in Denmark 2014, Center for Contemporary Religion, Aarhus University. Online publication: http://samtidsreligion.au.dk/religion-i-danmark/2014/. Accessed 3 Oct 2016.
- Nielsen, Marie Vejrup, and Lene Kühle. 2011. Religion and state in Denmark: Exception among exceptions? Nordic Journal of Religion and Society 24 (2): 173–188.Google Scholar
- Nielsen, Marie Vejrup, and Else Marie Wiberg Pedersen. 2012. The evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark. In Exploring a heritage: Evangelical Lutheran Churches in the north, Church of Sweden Research Series, ed. Anne-Louise Eriksson, Göran Gunner, and Niclas Blåder, vol. 5, 10–15. Eugene: Wipf & Stock Publishers.Google Scholar
- Including approaches to the studies, overview of results and data material etc., concerning the Danish Pluralism project (2002) and the Religion in Aarhus project (2012), as well as the national annual survey Religion in Denmark: www.samtidsreligion.au.dk