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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Consalvi, Ercole

(504 words)

Author(s): Alberigo, Giuseppe
[German Version] (Jun 8, 1757, Rome – Jan 24, 1824, Rome). Raised without a father, Consalvi was sent to the Piarists in Urbino to be educated in 1763; in 1771, he entered the seminary in Frascati; from 1776–1782, he studied at the Accademia Ecclesiastica in Rome; in 1783/1784, he began a steep ecclesiastical career when he was appointed referendario della segnatura. Two years later, he became a member of the Congregazione del Buon Governo responsible for the administration of the secular goods of the Church; in 1789, he became votant of the Signatura and in 1792 auditor of the Rota. Despite …


(4,604 words)

Author(s): Hermsen, Edmund | Käppel, Lutz | Dautzenberg, Gerhard | Härle, Wilfried | Mokrosch, Reinhold
[German Version] I. History of Religion – II. Greco-Roman Antiquity – III. New Testament – IV. Dogmatics and Ethics – V. Practical Theology I. History of Religion The original meaning of the word, (divine) “joint knowledge, knowledge, consciousness, and self-consciousness” (Gk syneídēsis, Lat. conscientia), had already changed in antiquity to refer to an evaluative consciousness of one's own actions. Western philosophical and theological discourse formed various metaphors: the internal; the inner voiced ( daimónion; daimon), also interpreted as the voice …

Conscience Formation

(569 words)

Author(s): Mokrosch, Reinhold
[German Version] The terms conscience training and conscience formation are used interchangeably today. Following J.H. Jung-Stilling the two ( Gewissenserziehung and Gewissensbildung) were distinguished, however: conscience formation was associated with the formation of the temperament and the psyche (Gemüt), conscience training, in contrast, with the sharpening of reason and the will. I. Kant still distinguished between conscience cultivation and conscience training. Today, however, the …

Conscientious Objection

(1,284 words)

Author(s): Grube, Andreas | Reuter, Hans-Richard | Hennig, Martin
[German Version] I. Law – II. Ethics – III. Practical Theology I. Law The right to conscientious objection in Germany, which long existed only as a special privilege granted to the members of the historic peace churches (e.g. the Mennonites in Prussia; see II below), today enjoys special constitutional protection through art. 4 III of German Basic Law (“No one may be forced into armed military service against his conscience”) as the most common example of freedom of cons…


(1,601 words)

Author(s): Waldenfels, Hans | Horowski, Reinhard | Hampe, Michael | Dierken, Jörg
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Natural Sciences – III. Philosophy – IV. Philosophy of Religion and Fundamental Theology I. Religious Studies The modern development of the concept of consciousness, in conjunction with the simultaneous concern for data in religious studies, has led to the question of the locus and understanding of consciousness in non-European systems of thought and religion. The underlying reality of the basic Western understanding of consciousness, which was rathe…

Conscription/National Service

(2,668 words)

Author(s): Reuter, Hans-Richard | Ennuschat, Jörg
[German Version] I. Concept and History – II. Current Legal Situation – III. Ethics – IV. Conscription/National Service of Ministers I. Concept and History 1. Concept Conscription refers to a system of military recruiting based (in contrast to voluntary military ser¶ vice in an army of professional and/or regular soldiers) on the public, legal duty of all citizens capable of serving. Depending on the respective composition of the state's military, conscripted military service can be performed either in militia units or in a standing mobile troop. 2. History The basic notion of …

Consecrated Title

(261 words)

Author(s): Puza, Richard
[German Version] The consecrated title guarantees the support of clerics in higher orders (Consecration/Ordination/Dedication: I). In Old Church law, consecrated title relates to office and ministry, and the source of support. Consecrated titles were the titulus beneficii (sinecured office), patrimonii ([private] assets), pensionis (lifelong payments from assets) and mensae (title to the table, a third party's promise of support in emergencies), in the modern period, servitii dioecesis (service in the diocese) and missionis (in the area of the Propaganda fide). In the CIC/191…


(190 words)

Author(s): Haunerland, Winfried
[German Version] Consecrare (“sanctify, consecrate”) and consecratio refer, especially since the patristic period (Tertullian, Ambrose of Milan) to the eucharistic transformation of bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ (Real Presence; see also Eucharist/Communion: I; II). Despite all distinction from the Catholic teaching of transsubstantiation, Luther – though not other Reformation traditions and many Lutherans – held fast to the idea of consecra…


(724 words)

Author(s): Grethlein, Christian
[German Version] I. Theology – II. Church Law – III. Practical Theology I. Theology Consecration (Ger. Einsegnung) is a theologically vague term of liturgical (or more specifically benedictional) practice. It denotes the public ceremony, with laying-on of hands, that communicates God's blessing to certain individuals at special times in their lives. Without being clearly distinguished from other forms of blessing, consecration today denotes primarily the blessing of ¶ young people at confirmation and of other members of the congregation at the beginnin…


(1,422 words)

Author(s): Müller, Gerhard Ludwig | Felmy, Karl Christian | Hofhansl, Ernst W. | Germann, Michael
[German Version] I. Catholic Church – II. Orthodox Church – III. Protestantism – IV. Canon Law I. Catholic Church The term consecration is used to render various liturgical and canon law terms: ordinatio, dedicatio, consecratio, benedictio. This demonstrates that the content of the notion of consecration extends broadly. Common is the conviction of faith that an object of earthly reality is connected in a particular way with God and the saving work in Christ. This connection is related to the theology of …

Consejo de Indias,

(250 words)

Author(s): Prien, Hans-Jürgen
[German Version] Indian Council ( Consejo Real y Supremo de las Indias). Initially, the Casa de la Contratación (CC) had been founded in 1504 in Seville as the sole executive organ for American affairs. Gaspar de Gricio (died 1507) and Juan Rodríguez de Fonseca (died 1524), the bishops of Palencia, acted simultaneously as royal advisers for Indian affairs. In 1508, Lope de Conchillos was appointed secretary to Fonseca, whereupon a state bureaucratic authority responsible for all ¶ administrative matters gradually took shape. Functioning as a kind of office for Indian …

Consejo Episcopal Latinoamericano

(361 words)

Author(s): Collet, Giancarlo
[German Version] (CELAM; Latin American Council of Bishops) is an organ of the Catholic Church established at the request of the bishops of Latin America and the Caribbean at their first general conference in Rio de Janeiro in 1955; it was approved by Pope Pius XII in the same year. After several extremely fruitful years occupied primarily with responding creatively to the decisions of Vatican II, the second general conference in Medellín in 1968 led to a …

Consejo Latinoamericano de Iglesias

(158 words)

Author(s): Altmann, Walter
[German Version] (CLAI; Latin American Council of Churches). The CLAI was established provisionally in 1978 (Oaxtepec, Mexico), and definitively in 1982 (Huampaní, Peru). It was preceded by various church congresses (including the Mission Conference in Panama, 1916) and ecumenical organizations (esp. Movimiento pro Unidad Evangélica Latinoamericana [UNELAM] and Iglesia y Sociedad en América Latina (ISAL). Membership of the CLAI is currently held by 144 (and other orthod…

Conselho Indigenista Missionario

(294 words)

Author(s): Süss, Paulo Günter
[German Version] (CIMI; Indigenous Missionary Counsel), an advisory panel of 25 missionaries and bishops that was convened in Brasilia by the Brazilian Bishops' Conference to draft a policy on the legal status of the indigenous population. It first met on April 23, 1972, on the historical background of the ethnocidal economic policies of a military dictatorship, but also in the context of sharp criticism expressed by anthropologists over the church's missionary a…


(1,749 words)

Author(s): Schwöbel, Christoph
[German Version] I. Fundamental Theology – II. Dogmatic Theology – III. Ethics I. Fundamental Theology Both in fundamental theology and in philosophy, there is considerable dissent as to the justification, significance, and function of consensus (from Lat. consensus, “agreement, unanimity”). In the philosophical context, the recourse to universal consensus, or to the consensus of all rational people, with respect to controversial claims of truth and validity is found as early as Plato ( Gorg. 487e) and Aristotle ( Top. A1, 100b21–22). Cicero ( Div. I 1; Tusc. I 36) invokes it …

Consensus gentium

(7 words)

[German Version] Consensus

Consensus patrum

(123 words)

Author(s): Niemann, Franz-Josef
[German Version] Since the 4th century, the “consensus of the (church) Fathers” has been considered a criterion of the revealed truth of doctrines of the faith; according to the Council of Trent (DH 1507) and Vatican I (DH 3007), it is a norm of scriptural interpretation, whereas the Reformers subordinated the Fathers to Scripture. Since Vatican II (DH 4211, 4217–4219, 4230), Catholic theology has used arguments based on the history of theology and dogma to qualify the witness of the Fathers; in the interpretation of Scripture, consensus patrum clearly plays a lesser role than his…

Consensus quinquesaecularis

(8 words)

[German Version] Calixtus, Georg

Consensus theologorum

(74 words)

Author(s): Beinert, Wolfgang
[German Version] In theological epistemology, consensus theologorum as a criterion of truth refers to the consensus of experts regarding the substance and/or formulation of a doctrine of the faith, based on appropriate interpretation of Scripture, ecclesiastical tradition ( consensus patrum ), and the belief of Christians ( consensus fidelium) under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Wolfgang Beinert Bibliography P. Scharr, Consensus fidelium, 1992 D. Wiederkehr, ed., Der Glaubenssinn des Gottesvolkes, 1994.

Consensus Tigurinus

(8 words)

[German Version] Bullinger, Heinrich
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