Albania

Population

About country profiles

The country profiles are intended to provide some background and context for the descriptions of the churches. These profiles should be read in conjunction with those of the churches in the country.

Click here for the sources of the statistical data

*:
3220164
Surface area:28750 km2
Capital:Tirana
GNI per capita:1740 US$
Classification:Economy in transition
Languages:

Albanian

Greek

Macedonian

Religions:

Muslim: 39.00%

Christian: 35.00%

Atheist: 26.00%

Christianity:

Orthodox: 614100

Catholics: 524219

Protestants: 39380

Independent: 97470

Google maps

Albania has been successively part of the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires. It became independent in 1912 and was a monarchy from 1924 to 1939, when it was invaded by fascist Italy. The Albanian Communist Party, formed in 1941, seized control of the country in 1944, installing one of the harshest communist dictatorships of modern history. Under Enver Hoxha, Albania was declared an atheist nation in 1967, and all religious and traditional beliefs were forbidden. It was a fear-driven regime, clamping down on all who resisted, intellectuals, clergy, and other opponents. Many Orthodox and Catholic bishops and priests were killed or sent to prison. Albania was politically and economically isolated from the rest of the world, including the communist world. In 1990, in the context of the end of the cold war and under internal pressure within the party and by the people, the communist regime collapsed. Since then, Albania has gone through several crises of instability, due in part to the conflicts in the Balkans. The political and economic situation is improving, but slowly. The two largest churches, Orthodox and Catholic, have re-established themselves. Islam has also re-affirmed itself in Albania. There has been a considerable influx of Evangelical, Pentecostal and other Christian faith missions. Relationships between the faith communities are on the whole tolerant. There is no council of churches.

 

Ecumenical Organizations and Councils

    WCC member churches based in Albania

    WCC member churches present in Albania

      Note: The list of churches present in countries is still in development.

      Last updated: 01/01/06