Christianity in Kosovo


Christianity in Kosovo

Christianity in Kosovo has a long standing tradition dating the times before the Ottoman conquest of the Balkans. Before the Battle of Kosovo in 1389, the entire Balkan region had been Christianized by both the Roman and Byzantine Empires. From 1389 until 1912, Kosovo was officially governed by the Muslim Ottoman Empire and, as such, a high level of Islamization occurred. During the time period after World War II, Kosovo was ruled by secular socialist authorities in the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY). During that period, Kosovars became increasingly secularized. Today, over 90% of Kosovo's population is Muslim, most of whom are ethnic Albanians.[1]

About three percent of ethnic Albanians in Kosovo remain Roman Catholic despite centuries of the Ottoman rule. There are an estimated 65,000 Catholics in Kosovo and another 60,000 Kosovar born Catholics outside of Kosovo.[2]

The Serb population, estimated at 100,000 to 120,000 persons, is largely Serbian Orthodox. Kosovo is densely covered by numerous Serb Orthodox churches and monasteries.[3][4][5] Some 140 churches are reported to have been destroyed and partly looted for the black market in the 1999 to 2004 period, of these 30 in a single outburst of violence in March 2004.[6]

There is also a small number of evangelical Protestants, whose tradition dates back to the Methodist missionaries' work centered in Bitola in the late 19th century. They are represented by the Kosovo Protestant Evangelical Church (KPEC).[7]

See also

  • Religion in Kosovo
  • Human rights in Kosovo
  • Freedom of religion in Kosovo
  • Roman Catholicism in Kosovo
  • Orthodox Christianity in Kosovo
  • Serbian Orthodox Church in Kosovo
  • Kosovo Protestant Evangelical Church (KPEC)
  • Crypto-Christianity in Kosovo

References


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