Why is Poland so religious?

My parents have a Polish background and I notice that their relatives and my Babci (grandma) are all very religious. 80% of people in Poland believe in god and 15% believe in a spirit but what I don't understand is-why? People say its because the devastation caused by WW2 and communism but look at a country such as the Czech Republic. The Czechs were invaded by the Nazis and also by the communists as well as the Hungarians but Hungary is much less religious than Poland with only 49% saying they believe in a God and 31% in a spirit while only 19% of the Czechs believe in God and 50% believing in a spirit. Why is Poland so religious and nationalist????? I am of Polish background and an atheist and I don't understand, religion and nationalism were driving forces for the demolition of the entire Polish people!!!


@Nya I know how much **** Poland has been through except there are other countries who have been through a large amount of hardships as well. Let's look at the Czech Republic. They went through the Austrian Empire and became part of Austro-Hungary, WW1, WW2, the holocaust, communism etc. Except they are one of the least religious countries in the world. Religion tends to cause more xenophobia and hatred, hopefully with not many hardships facing Poland anymore, they can become less pious.

12 Answers

  • 7 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    They have their right to be religious as you have your right to be atheist.

    as for the historical background and WW2, I believe Poland went through most atriocities and turning to religion is quite natural for people in times of trouble.

    As for the partitions of Poland, religion was one of the factors that defined people's ethnicity. The countries that invaded us were either protestant or orthodox, so catholicism was a part of Polish identity in a way.

    In even more distant past, Poland was the threshold of Christianity in Europe, just to mention Khan or Turkish attempts to invade Europe. And later on, we fought Bolsheviks in 1920.

    Finally, in the times of communism, when people were supposed to be atheist, a Polish cardinal became the Pope - the first non-Italian pope in centuries and a sign for Poles that things could change. The world finally heard of Poland again.

    There are more examples of this kind. And in a way, religion brought people together and defined their identity. Not all Polish people are that religious - it's possible that 80% believe in God, but certainly much fewer attend Mass every Saturday.

    Of course, there are people who are not Catholics but still believe in God, but it's their right. Why should anyone question it? I guess, you wouldn't like anyone questioning your atheism, would you?

    I really don't understand your opinion that 'religion and nationalism were driving forces for the demolition of the entire Polish people.' In what way?

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  • 7 years ago

    Poland and Czech republic do not share common, modern, religious history. Each nation developed own religious institutions and structure;l therefore, have different attachment to it. Czechs through history identified religious institutions and organized faith as a problem to the development of their country, and consider it as the main oppressor of the common people. In Poland, catholic church was seen as a necessary tool for a national survival against Prussia and Russia. Church became a part of the national identity and culture. Czechs came to exactly opposite conclusion due Protestant Reformation known in Bohemia and Moravia as a Hussite Revolution, and believe that the church posses a danger to the civic independence. John Huss (+1415) said that the church will without shame steal last penny from a poor widow, and deny her rites on a deathbed. The Czech society saw a church as a road robber and thief, and did was inherited into modern society. People would not spent money on religion because they think that it could be spent better=> for themselves. Czechs or Hungarians also faced genocides (Mongol invasion or Four Crusades against Bohemians), but in both countries people will say when the times were bad, the Lord was nowhere to find, and when times are good, he was not there either to help. While Czechs are religiously indifferent, there is also known saying from Czech fictional character, Jara Cimrman: “I’m such an unconditional atheist that I’m afraid God will punish me.”

    Poland is unusually religious country within the Central Europe, because it never experienced opposition to the church hierarchy in its history. It did not had reformers or rulers that would challenge church's power as was the case in Germany, France, Bohemia, Hungary, or Lower countries. Polish culture, language, education, and social institutions were integrated with a church and this association became a part of the nationhood. Similar bonds are also find in Romania, Ireland, Serbia, or Greece. Younger Polish generation is increasingly indifferent toward faith, and will eventually follow a development of the other countries around. Anna Grodsky became a first transsexual elected into Sejm. During my last visit in Poland, I noticed that only elderly people were attending church services.

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  • 7 years ago

    Poland has had a huge amount of trouble in it's lifetime.

    From the devastating Swedish invasion of the 1600's

    To the partition of their lands in the 1700's

    The struggles for independence in the 1800's

    World war I and II in the 1900's both raged across Polish lands

    And of course, the holocaust

    In times of trouble, many people turn to religion for help or solace. This heritage of hardship has helped to make Poland a very pious nation.

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  • Anonymous
    7 years ago

    For Poles the Catholic Church was their ally, actively supporting their cause and providing moral support in times of need.

    For Czechs it was the enemy, a whip of oppressors, forced upon them by foreign powers.

    Czechs were originally ardent Catholics, but during 15th century they came with their own proto-protestant form of Christianity as a reaction to rampant corruption in Catholic Church (see Hussite wars). Hussite and later Protestant faith became deeply entrenched in the Czech culture for almost two centuries, until Czech Protestant nobility started Thirty Years War. Sadly, that was the last thing they did, not counting losing their heads on a chopping block.

    In the aftermath Hapsburgs initiated a forced nation wide conversion to Catholicism, confiscation of property, executions and massive expulsions of protestants and hussites who were unwilling to give up their faith.

    With Catholic faith being forced upon people by foreign (unpopular) rulers and every other form of Christianity forbidden, many people turned away from the faith completely.

    The first republic after regaining independence from Austria-Hungary did not change this trend as its leaders were still strongly anti-Vatican and Communism period was just a cherry on the top. The unfortunate decision of Czech Catholic Church to collaborate with Communist Party (unlike in Poland) did not help either.

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  • 7 years ago

    Because Poland was dismembered during the XVIIIth century, and most of it was under Russian control, who were orthodox christians, while the poles are catholic. Before the age of nationalism, common religion was the link between the polish people under the Russian oppression. I think.

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  • ameen
    Lv 4
    3 years ago

    What Religion Are Polish People

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  • 7 years ago

    I thought 80% of Poland's population were Catholics, an don't some have a history Jewish backrounds?

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  • 7 years ago

    It's not religious, your informations are wrong .. I'm atheist , my brother also has nothing in common with church , we live in Poland and are Polish

    and 80 % catholics is a polish church propaganda data which are faked .. Don't belive in it .

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  • 7 years ago

    Those mean Polish guilt-tripping grandmas.

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  • Shrubs
    Lv 6
    7 years ago

    Same reason that cows go moo.

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