Members Of Iceland's Pagan Faith Nearly Quadruple Over Past Decade - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Members Of Iceland’s Pagan Faith Nearly Quadruple Over Past Decade

Published February 13, 2019

Andie Fontaine
Main photo by
Haukurth/Wikimedia Commons

Ásatrú, the pagan faith which honours the Norse pantheon and worldview, is currently on the rise in Iceland. So much so that members of the Ásatrú Society have nearly quadrupled in just the past ten years, Kjarninn reports.

According to data compiled from the National Registry and Statistics Iceland, membership in the Ásatrú Society is now 4,472 people strong. This makes it the fifth largest religious organisation in the country, and the largest not based on Christianity.

Furthermore, membership has grown from 1,154 members in the beginning of 2008, meaning they have nearly quadrupled in size in just ten years. Quite an accomplishment for a religious group that deliberately does not proselytise.

Established in 1972, the Ásatrú Society received legal recognition the year following, and for decades their numbers were in the low hundreds. That changed in 1993, as their numbers began to increase more steadily, with 2017 being a banner year for them, as 543 people registered with them in that year alone.

The temple that the Ásatrú Society announced they were developing for Öskuhlíð—the wooded area around Perlan—has reportedly gone over budget, but they are considering starting a crowdfunding campaign to be able to complete the project.

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