The aim of this study was to find out if the typical spread of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 in The Netherlands, with significantly higher levels in the Dutch Bible belt and the southern, traditionally Catholic provinces, is related to the specific religious composition of the country . To do this, government statistics regarding the level of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 per municipality were combined with statistics regarding church attendance and church membership rates . Results showed that in the Dutch Bible belt the level of patients with COVID-19 was strongly related to church attendance, but in the southern, traditionally Catholic part of The Netherlands nominal church membership mattered more than church attendance . On the basis of these findings, the conclusion was drawn that religion probably facilitates the spread of the virus in both a direct and indirect way . It facilitates the spread of the virus directly through worship services but also indirectly by way of endorsing more general cultural festivities like carnival and maybe even by strengthening certain non-religious social bonds . Epidemiologists monitoring the spread of the virus are called upon to focus more on these possible indirect or latent effects of religion.