Most Dutch do not trust churches


Western Europe

A churchgoer praying in a Roman Catholic Cathedral in the Dutch town of Roermond. Photo ANP, Sem van der Wal

Only about 30 per cent of the Dutch says to have trust in churches. That is shown by a new study by the statistic agency CBS.

The low amount of trust is not something new, CVandaag writes. It has been around 30 per cent for years. Compared to 2021, a few more people indicated to trust the church. In 2021, the percentage was 29.2, and in 2022, at 29.6.

That means churches have homework to do, the editors in chief of the Dutch daily Reformatorisch Dagblad write in a comment. According to the authors, secularisation is no excuse for low trust. They argue that it is the duty of churches to open their doors more often and wider when society lacks knowledge about God and religious affairs. “Not to welcome the world inside, but to bring the Gospel outside. Because Christians ought to be the light of the world and the salt of the world, in line with what the Bible teaches.”


The CBS report that was published on Tuesday, also shows that the Dutch trust in politics has plummeted. Only about a quarter of the population trusts the lower house, for example.

At the same time, people tend to trust their neighbours in general. This percentage has been increasing over the past ten years from 58 to 66 per cent.

The healthcare system, police and judges enjoy the most trust.