Religion is main group activity in Greece: study

ATHENS (AFP) — Religion is the main group activity in Greece where one in three people take part in church-related events, a study published Thursday shows.

Among 5,700 households and over 12,000 individuals queried, 29.1 percent said they took part in a religious event over the past year compared to 8.2 percent who engaged in recreational group activity such as sport or folk dancing, Ta Nea daily reported.

Attending church on Sunday was considered religious participation.

The 2006 study by the national statistics service (ESYE) took into account activities by the Orthodox Church — the dominant religion in Greece with over 90 percent of adherents — but also those of smaller groups such as Jehovas Witnesses and Evangelists.

Most of those who attended religious events are above the age of 65 and low income earners, the study shows.

In comparison, 5.9 percent of Greeks showed up at a guild event, 5.0 percent opted for a political party or union gathering and just 3.2 percent assisted charitable activity.