Religion Past and Present

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Voluntary Work and Associations
(4,301 words)

[German Version]

I. Importance in Europe

A voluntary association (Ger. ehrenamtliche Vereinigung)serves the common interest of its members. Voluntarism has to do with the freedom of the will (voluntas; Free will), and when individuals work together of their own free will in order to accomplish a task, this leads to the creation of a voluntary association. Membership in it is neither compulsory nor acquired by birth, and its activities…

Cite this page
Pierard, Richard, Guder, Darrell and Schibilsky, Michael, “Voluntary Work and Associations”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 12 June 2021 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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