Religion Past and Present

Get access Subject: Religious Studies
Edited by: Hans Dieter Betz, Don S. Browning†, Bernd Janowski and Eberhard Jüngel

Religion Past and Present (RPP) Online is the online version of the updated English translation of the 4th edition of the definitive encyclopedia of religion worldwide: the peerless Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart (RGG). This great resource, now at last available in English and Online, Religion Past and Present Online continues the tradition of deep knowledge and authority relied upon by generations of scholars in religious, theological, and biblical studies. Including the latest developments in research, Religion Past and Present Online encompasses a vast range of subjects connected with religion.

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(7,155 words)

Author(s): Beinert, Wolfgang | Rappel, Simone | Conzemius, Victor | Collet, Giancarlo
[German Version] I. Concept – II. Distribution and Membership Statistics – III. Church History – IV. Missions in Catholicism I. Concept “Catholicism” is generally understood as encompassing the historically conditioned and therefore contingent configurations that have emerged when the basic dogmatic, ethical, and constitutional elements of Roman Catholic Christianity have taken root in concrete societies. More specifically, this can mean (a) theologically the realization in space and time of the Roman Catholic organizational structure, based t…

Catholicity of the Church

(1,699 words)

Author(s): Oberdorfer, Bernd
[German Version] I. The Term and its History – II. Catholicity in the Confessional Traditions – III. Catholicity and Ecumenism – IV. Systematic Perspectives Together with unity (Church unity), holiness (Sacredness and sinfulness), and apostolicity, catholicity is one of the four attributes used by the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed to characterize the church (notae ecclesiae); hence it has become a central concept of ecclesiology. Its meaning, however, is complex. Furthermore, t…


(115 words)

Author(s): Kaufhold, Hubert
[German Version] is the title borne by the heads of the Oriental Orthodox National Churches lying outside the boundaries of the former Roman Empire. It corresponds to the title of “patriarch” and has been employed by the Eastern Syrian Church since the 5th century, whereupon it was adopted by the Armenians, Georgians, Caucasian Albanians, and in part by the Melkites and Indians. The catholicos of the Eastern Syrians and Georgians later assumed the t…

Catholic Social Teaching

(1,565 words)

Author(s): Anzenbacher, Arno
[German Version] I. Assumptions – II. Catholic Social Teaching until Vatican II – III. Catholic Social Teaching since Vatican II – IV. Fundamental Concepts In the narrower sense, Catholic social teaching is the church's social teaching as expressed in texts issued by the teaching office; in the broader sense, it is their development in social ethics as a theological discipline. I. Assumptions The social question of the 19th century demanded of the church a theoretical orientation in addition to charitable engagement. This orientation was…

Cauer, Minna

(180 words)

Author(s): Balzer, Jette K.B.
[German Version] (Nov 1, 1841, Freyenstein/Ostprignitz – Aug 3, 1922, Berlin), women's rights activist. She was a leading representative of the progressive wing of the women's civil rights movement (Feminism and feminist theology), whose central concerns included the attainment of female suffrage. In 1888, she co-founded the Frauenwohl (“Women's Welfare”) association, which became the crystallization point of this movement and the publisher of its organ, Frauenwohl (1893/1894), later published under the title Die Frauenbewegung (The Women's Movement; 1895–1919), …


(163 words)

Author(s): Saarinen, Risto
[German Version] The Latin word causa is usually understood to denote the causal element of a cause and effect relationship (Causality: I). The Aristotelian system of four causes ( causa efficiens, causa finalis, causa formalis, and causa materialis; Arist. Metaph. I, 3; Phys. II, 3) profoundly influenced theological thought in Scholasticism and Lutheran orthodoxy (II, 2.a). Causa can also ¶ denote the necessary conditions ( causa sine qua non) for something to take place. – In the expressions causa sui and causa prima, causa functions as a term for God. As causa sui, God is his own ca…


(3,429 words)

Author(s): Schütt, Hans-Peter | Russell, Robert John | Steiger, Johann Anselm | Huxel, Kirsten
[German Version] I. Philosophy – II. Science – III. Dogmatics – IV. Ethics I. Philosophy Causality (from Lat. causa, “cause”), also causal nexus, causal relationship, is a term for the characteristic relationship between cause and effect. The things related are generally assumed to be pairs of events (event causality), though in some cases they may be an active thing and an event (agent causality); whether agent causality can be reduced to event causality is disputed. In either ca…

Cavalier, Jean

(150 words)

Author(s): Dingel, Irene
[German Version] (Nov 28, 1681, Ribaute-les-Tavernes – May 17, 1740, Chelsea). First a shepherd, then a baker's apprentice, Cavalier fled to Geneva in 1701 for faith reasons. Already in the following year, he stepped forward as a “prophet” and military leader of the Camisards who were secretly gathering in the Cévennes for armed resistance. While the counter-measures of the marshal of Montrevel proved ineffective, his successor Villars succeeded in subduing Cava…

Cave Paintings

(8 words)

[German Version] Prehistoric Art


(7 words)

[German Version] Sacred Sites

Cavour, Camillo Benso di

(498 words)

Author(s): Alberigo, Giuseppe
[German Version] (count; Aug 10, 1810, Turin – Jun 6, 1881, Turin) was the son of a noble Piedmontese family who entered the Accademia militare in 1820 and was introduced at court in 1824. Studies in economics followed. From 1835 onward, he traveled throughout England (showing interest in the Poor Law), France (Paris), Switzerland (Geneva), and Belgium. The year 1829 marked the beginning of a rationalistic crisis that alienated him from reactionary culture and its affiliated circles. He assumed the management of his family'…

Cecilian Feasts

(337 words)

Author(s): Ruff, Anthony
[German Version] are festivals of a musical, cultural, or religious nature held on Nov 22, the feast day of St. Cecilia. The early Christian saint and martyr is known only through unreliable accounts written centuries after her martyrdom, during which (pagan) instruments were played ( cantatibus organis). Beginning in ¶ the late 15th century, she became the patroness of music and of numerous musicians' guilds. In 1570, the association “Le Puy de musique” was founded in Évreux, Normandy. Its festivities included musical performance…

Cecilia, Saint

(216 words)

Author(s): Götz, Roland
[German Version] (saint's day: Nov 22), virgin and martyr. The patroness of a Roman titular church, who gave it its name, was transformed by the legendary Passio (5th/6th cent.) into a 3rd-century patrician lady who took a vow of chastity prior to her wedding and convinced her husband Valerianus to do the same. Having donated her house in order to build a church, she suffered martyrdom by beheading during a persecution. The veneration of Cecilia probably began in the 5th century; the celebrati…

Celan, Paul

(510 words)

Author(s): Weyer-Menkhoff, Stephan
[German Version] (Nov 23, 1920, Czernowitz, now in Ukraine – end of Apr, 1970, Paris, by suicide). Born Paul Ancel, the son of German-speaking parents, for a time he studied medicine and Romance languages and literature. In 1942 he was deported to a labor camp and lived from 1948 until his death in Paris (teaching at the Ecole Normale Supérieure).This Jewish poet set the standards for modern German poetry. He composed his poems exclusively in German and also tran…

Celebrant's Prayer/Chant

(352 words)

Author(s): Saliers, Don E. | Praßl, Franz Karl
[German Version] I. Liturgy – II. Music I. Liturgy Historically, the German term Altargesang relates to texts that are sung only by the priest during the mass (celebrant's prayer), and in a broader sense to all sung parts of the liturgy that are led by a celebrant: collects, verses, litanies, Gospel and Epistle readings, responses between choir and congregation, blessings as well as the intoning of the Kyrie, the Gloria and the Creed. The churches of ¶ the Reformation added new compositions for the choir and the congregation. Luther's Deutsche Messe (1526) as a psalm or a hymn as I…


(94 words)

Author(s): Rees, Wilhelm
[German Version] In the Catholic Church, this is a letter of recommendation by a priest's own ordinary (Incardination) or superior for admission by the church rector of a different church to celebrate the Eucharist there. A celebret may not be more than a year old (cf. c. 903 CIC/1983; c. 703 CCEO) and is intended to prevent unsanctioned celebrations (cf. c. 1378 § 2, 1° CIC/1983; c. 1443 CCEO). Wilhelm Rees Bibliography K. Lüdicke, MKCIC, canon 903 (as of Nov 1989) E. Miragoli, “Il celebret,” Quaderni di diritto ecclesiale 7, 1994, 435–442.

Celestine III, Pope

(153 words)

Author(s): Hartmann, Wilfried
[German Version] (Apr 10, 1191 – Jan 8, 1198). Born in Rome around 1105/1106, Celestine (Giacinto [Hyacinthus] Bobone [later Orsini]) studied in Paris under Peter Abelard (c. 1130) and defended him against the accusations brought forward by Bernard of Clairvaux at the Synod of Sens (1140). In 1143/1144, Celestine II appointed him cardinal-deacon at the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin. In the following years, he undertook several journeys as a papal legate (esp. to Spain) and…

Celestine I, Pope

(122 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] (422–432). As the successor of Boniface I, Celestine attempted to consolidate the Roman primacy, but he encountered the resistance of the West African bishops. Moreover, he opposed Pelagianism (Pelagius) and from 430 Nestorius; the majority of his correspondence relates to this conflict. ¶ Eventually, he sent Germanus of Auxerre in 429 and “the Celtic bishop” Palladius in 431 to England and Ireland for the anti-Pelagian mission. Christoph Markschies Bibliography CPL 1650–1654 PL 50, 417–558 ACO I/1/7, 125–137; I/2/5, 5–101 On Celestine: E. Caspar, Geschichte des…


(316 words)

Author(s): Eder, Manfred
[German Version] Pietro del Morrone (later Pope Celestine V) founded the male branch (Hermits of St. Damian, Fratres de Spiritu Sancto, Coelestini, OSBCoel) between 1240 and 1243 as a strictly ascetic monastic community following the Rule of Benedict (supplemented with Constitutions). It was confirmed by pope Urban IV in 1263 and spread quickly in Italy and, after 1300, in France; with a few monasteries also in Spain, Belgium, and Germany (Oybin near Zittau, Prague, …

Celestine V, Pope

(260 words)

Author(s): Schmidt, Tilmann
[German Version] (Jul 5 – Dec 13, 1294). Celestine (Pietro of Morrone, born 1209/1210 Molise) lived as a hermit at Monte Morrone near Sulmona, then in the Maiella mountains, where he developed the hermit congregation of the Celestines within Benedictine monasticism on the Cistercian model with a general abbot and chapters. He had contacts with Franciscan spirituals and affinities with the eschatological speculations of Joachim of Fiore. After the death of Nicholas IV an…
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