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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State and Christianity

(12 words)

[German Version] Church and State, State and Religion

State and Church

(9 words)

[German Version] Church and State

State and Religion

(2,721 words)

Author(s): Besier, Gerhard | Herms, Eilert | Kleine, Christoph
[German Version] I. The Problem In Western societies, the relationship between the state and religion is determined less by religion’s constitutional status – freedom of religion is a fundamental constitutional right everywhere – than by historical tradition. Where the major confessional bodies were (or still are) state churches, there is still a hierarchy of religions. Without regard to actual religious life, the state gives traditional religions a special status, materially and ideally. In the publ…

State Church

(1,054 words)

Author(s): Link, Christoph
[German Version] I As one type of relationship between church and state, a state church is a church incorporated into the state in such a way that it appears to be a state institution. As a result, the state not only has the right to intervene in the internal governance of the church (staffing, deciding doctrinal conflicts, disposition of church property, etc.; Church polity) but also may use the church for state purposes. 1 The history of state churches began when Theodosius I made the Christian church the only recognized church of the Roman Empire ( Reichskirche). In East Rome, a sacral …

State Contributions to the Churches

(452 words)

Author(s): Rüfner, Wolfgang
[German Version] The state contributions that the major churches receive in Germany are compensation for the expropriation of church property (Property, Church), especially during the Reformation and in the context of the French Revolution and the associated end of the Old Empire. This is stated clearly in §35 of the Principal Resolution of the Imperial Deputation of Feb 25, 1803. The territorial princes were conceded the right to confiscate church property, but they were obliged to provide for the needs of the churches. Article 138 §1 of the Weimar Constitution, which continu…

State Cult

(1,973 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph | Otto, Eckart | Kern, Martin | Pye, Michael
[German Version] I. History of Religions State cults in the narrow sense are religious ceremonies, governed by tradition or law, performed in the name of the state and for its benefit; typically they are addressed to extrasensory powers such as gods, demons, natural numina, or personalized cosmic forces. It is necessary to distinguish cults celebrated regularly at fixed times and places from those staged on a particular occasion such as an enthronement, the death of a ruler, a natural disaster, an epi…

State-owned Enterprise

(222 words)

Author(s): Kreikebaum, Hartmut
[German Version] A state-owned or public enterprise in the strict sense is an enterprise (Corporation) run by public authorities at various hierarchical levels. Its purpose is to produce and supply public goods and services. Such enterprises serve the public interest; by the principle of equality in German Basic Law art. 3, no one can be excluded from their use and enjoyment. Public goods include the maintenance of public safety (Security, Internal and external), monitoring of the economy and the …

State Religion

(245 words)

Author(s): Link, Christoph
[German Version] The term state religion denotes a religious element unifying the collectivity of subjects, considered indispensable for the existence of the state (“un roi, une loi, une foi”). It was taken for granted as the foundation of nearly every early form of the state. To the extent that religion is considered an element of public order, religious pluralism is perceived as a threat to the unity of the state, since it bears the seed of civil war, or at least qualified loyalty on the part of th…

State Supremacy

(7 words)

[German Version] Secular Supremacy

State Systems

(797 words)

Author(s): Stroh, Ralf
[German Version] A state system is the external structure of state governance and the external organization of the execution of governance. The Aristotelian system has influenced all later theories. It arranges the forms of state according to the number of rulers – one ruler, a few rulers, or many rulers (Arist. Pol. 1278b - 1301a). All of these forms of state face the alternative of either ¶ serving the common good or the self-interest of the rulers. This gives rise to the following positively regarded forms of state and their corresponding corrupt versions:…

Station Church

(202 words)

Author(s): Brüske, Gunda
[German Version] A statio (“station”) was originally a gathering or gathering place; it then came to be associated particularly with fasts and the liturgy of the word. In 4th-century Rome, it finally came to denote the eucharistic celebration by the bishop and the local church in stational churches, first newly designated and then permanently assigned in the 7th century; until 1970 they were still listed in the Roman Missal for 89 days. A unique feature (until the early 14th cent.) was a procession from a nearby church ( collecta). This form of urban liturgy, attested for other cit…

Stations of the Cross

(484 words)

Author(s): Brüske, Gunda
[German Version] a Catholic devotion that reenacts Jesus’ passion in 14 stations, from his sentencing by Pontius Pilate to his entombment, either tracing his footsteps or in contemplative prayer; it is primarily associated with Lent. Pilgrims began visiting the biblical sites associated with Jesus’ life in the 4th century, but the beginnings of the stations go back only to the late Middle Ages. In the 14th century, Franciscans in Jerusalem guided pilgrims along the Via Dolorosa, the (unhistorical…

Statistics, Church

(566 words)

Author(s): Grethlein, Christian
[German Version] Church statistics record the measurable data of the church’s life and circumstances. Such statistics, in a preliminary stage, begin to appear in the 14th century, in the form of registers recording baptisms, marriages, and burials (Ministerial offices). In the Churches of the Reformation, too, we soon find church registers with similar entries. The beginning of modern statistics was signaled by the numerical recording of data to identify regularities (political arithmetic). As the…

Statistics, Religion Adherence

(845 words)

Author(s): Hutter, Manfred
[German Version] In the first instance, religious statistics report the data that provide information on the local or global distribution of individual religions or religious groups. They are one aspect of a larger “religiometrics,” which includes all measurable factors associated with religion (e.g. sacred buildings, production of religious books and media, endowments) in order to take these quantitative values into account in interpreting religious phenomena or developments. “Counting procedures” in the context of religion go back to the dawn of the 1st millennium bce, if Da…

Stattler, Benedikt

(290 words)

Author(s): Fitschen, Klaus
[German Version] ( Jan 30, 1728, Kötzing – Aug 21, 1797, Munich). After teaching at Jesuit colleges, in 1780 Stattler was appointed professor of dogmatics at Ingolstadt, where he had J.M. Sailer as a student and later a colleague. After the Jesuit order was suppressed, he was able to keep his chair temporarily, but he was dismissed in 1781. In 1782 he was appointed to a parish in Kemnath (Upper Palatinate), but in 1788 he resigned and retreated into the life of an independent scholar in Munich. In this same year, he wrote his Anti-Kant polemic in opposition to Kant’s epistemology. From …

Status confessionis

(393 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger
[German Version] The concept of a status confessionis comes from the situation presented in Matt 10:32f., in which – under persecution – one must decide (Decision) between confessing Christ and denying Christ. Not every situation requiring a decision involves a status confessionis. Paul, for example, considered eating food offered to idols irrelevant to a person’s relationship to God (Adiaphora). But those who could see eating such food only as separation from Christ should refrain (Rom 14; 1 Cor 8). The term itself emerged during the Adiaphorist controversy, in which Mela…

Staudenmaier, Franz Anton

(369 words)

Author(s): Holzem, Andreas
[German Version] (Sep 11, 1800, Donzdorf, Württemberg – Jan 19, 1856, Freiburg im Breisgau). Ordained to the priesthood in 1827, in 1828 he was appointed lecturer at Tübingen and in 1830 professor of dogmatics at Gießen; in 1837 he took the same position in Freiburg, where he was also appointed canon. Staudenmaier, who studied with Johann Sebastian Drey (1777–1853), J.B. Hirscher, and J.A. Möhler in Tübingen, took issue with F.D.E. Schleiermacher, who, he argued, no longer based religion on the tr…

Stäudlin, Karl Friedrich

(167 words)

Author(s): Schröder, Markus
[German Version] ( Jul 25, 1761, Stuttgart – Jul 5, 1826, Göttingen). After studying from 1779 to 1784 at the Stift in Tübingen, in 1790 he was appointed professor of theology at Göttingen, on the recommendation of his teacher G.C. Storr. In 1803 he was also appointed to the consistorial council. To the end of his life, he and the church historian G.J. Planck together shaped the life of the theological faculty. In numerous contributions in almost every theological discipline, he sought to present …

Stauffenberg, Claus Schenk Graf von

(322 words)

Author(s): Hoffmann, Peter
[German Version] (Nov 15, 1907, Jettingen – Jul 20, 1944, Berlin), colonel on the general staff. His personality was rooted in three sources: the service ethic and faith ethic of the Catholic nobility in southern Germany ( noblesse oblige) together with family honor, the esotericism of the poet S. George, and the responsibility of the soldier. The officer corps must fight on behalf of the army, “our nation, and the state itself, aware that our military tradition and hence its bearer, the officer corps, represents the fundamental bea…

Staupitz, Johann von

(483 words)

Author(s): Hamm, Berndt
[German Version] (c. 1468 Motterwitz, near Leisnig – Dec 28, 1524, Salzburg). Staupitz, descended from an old Saxon family, played a key role in the transition from late medieval reform to the Reformation, especially because of his relationship to Luther. After his studies (M.A. from Cologne in 1489), he joined the observant German reform congregation of the Augustinian Hermits. He earned his Dr.theol. at Tübingen, where he had been the Augustinian prior since 1497; 1500 he became prior in Munich.…
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