The results of a new Capacent poll show 73% of Icelanders favoring separation of church and state. General trust that people have in the church has also declined significantly.
Of those who responded to the question of whether they supported or were opposed to separation of church and state, 73% said they were in favor, and 27% were against. Public support of separation of church and state has been measured since 1993, and this year’s figures are unchanged from last year’s.
Approval of the job Bishop of Iceland Karl Sigurbjörnsson has been doing has dropped significantly, standing at 24% now. At the same time, only four out of ten respondents said they trust the church a great deal. Trust in the church was at about 60% in 2000.
There are distinct differences of opinion on the church when it comes to where an Icelander lives in the country. People living in the countryside were much more likely to support the bishop and trust the church than people living in the capital area. By the same token, younger people were also more likely to support separation of church and state than older people.