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Religion in Spain

Religious beliefs in Spain are changing.

Although still about 90% of Spaniards are still Roman Catholics religion in Spain has begun to accept other religions in to their culture. In fact in Spain today you will find that there are about 300,000 Muslims living in the country along with about 250,000 protestants (Evengelists, Mormons, Lutherans, Baptists etc) as well as about 15,000 Jews who are most Sephardic. These particular Jews came from the countries of North Africa and have now settled in the large urban areas such as Madrid, Barcelona, Sevilla and Cordoba.

One great big change that has occurred in the last few years is that many Catholics living in Spain no longer attend weekly services at their local change in fact only about 75% of the Catholics that live in Spain will attend church on a regular weekly basis.

However what you will find with Spanish Roman Catholics is that they are religious in a uniquely Spanish way and this religion continues to play a major role in the life of this country. Certainly the religion that you find in Spain today has been shaped by Roman control and only really begun to be established during the 2nd Century. Certainly for many centuries Spain is a nation born out of religious struggles between the Catholics, Islamists, Judaists and Protestants. It was during the Spanish Inquisition that Catholicism really took a hold as the Christian Spaniards fought hard to drive the Moors from the country. However the inquisition was finally got rid of in the 1830's. However even after this religious freedom was often denied. Then in 1851 Catholicism became the states religion and a pact was signed by the Spanish Government (Concordat) which meant that Madrid had to pay the salaries of the clergy and to subsidize any other expenses that the Roman Catholic Church may incur in order to compensate them for the seizure of monachal property. However this pact was then renounced in 1931 and which threatened the very existence of the Church in Spain. Because of this the church provided support to General Franco during the uprising that occurred in 1936.

However both religious beliefs and religion in Spain is much more diverse and certainly things are slowly changing and there could be an even greater number of people who will be included into the Spanish culture who practice different religions in the future.

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