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(5,614 words)

Author(s): Becker, Dieter | Gerstenberger, Erhard S. | Osiek, Carolyn | Klein, Birgit | Heun, Werner | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Old Testament – III. New Testament – IV. Medieval and Modern Judaism – V. The Law – VI. History and Sociology – VII. Social Ethics – VIII.  Socialization Theory – IX. Education – X. Practical Theology I. Religious Studies The term family describes a varied network of relationships between parents, children and other persons in a social system. In ethnically shaped small-scale societies, family groups are bearers of religious rituals (Rite and Ritual) and centers of religious community. Fa…


(13,709 words)

Author(s): Sundermeier, Theo | Frankemölle, Hubert | Feldtkeller, Andreas | Collet, Giancarlo | George, Martin | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Christianity – III. Judaism – IV. Buddhism – V. Islam I. Religious Studies

Christian Villages

(178 words)

Author(s): Becker, Dieter
[German Version] Attempts to resettle people in villages created specifically for them in order to “civilize” and “convert…

Batak Churches

(672 words)

Author(s): Becker, Dieter
[German Version] The Batak churches of northern Sumatra essentially go back to the initiative of the Rhenish Mission (United Evangelical Mission), which started working there in 1861. The first missionaries, J.H. Meerwaldt and especially I.L. Nommensen, strove to strip the traditional legal and moral system ( Adat ) of its religious elements, in order that it might be integrated into the church order as “civil law.” As a result, particularly strong bonds wit…


(2,417 words)

Author(s): Mohr, Hubert | Becker, Dieter
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. History – III. Missiology I. Religious Studies Paganism (from Lat. paganus “pagan, rustic, civilian”; Pagandom) is the modern scientific term for the deliberate resumption (“reception”) or revival (“revitalization,” “reconstruction”) of ancient or recent ethnic religious traditions or elements of them (Cults; myths, symbols) outside Christianity and biblical Judaism. Although the religious occupation of an outgroup is structurally conceivable in other exclusive religious …


(2,955 words)

Author(s): Peacock, James | Schumann, Olaf | Becker, Dieter
[German Version] …

Simatupang, Tahi Bonar

(162 words)

Author(s): Becker, Dieter
[German Version] ( Jan 28, 1920, Sidikalang, North Sumatra – Jan 1, 1990, Jakarta), longtime chairman of the Communion of Churches in Indonesia (Batak churches) and one of its most eminent ecumenical pi…


(233 words)

Author(s): Becker, Dieter
[German Version] From its first formulation by President Achmed Sukarno, the Pancasila (from Sanksrit pañcaśīla, “five principles”) has been understood as a ¶ “state philosophy” guiding the people of Indonesia’s various ethnic communities, able to unite them in a single nation. Since the proclamation of the Republic of Indonesia in 1945, it has been in the preamble of all the various constitutions. In its original form, it read: “Belief in the one and only God. Just and civilized humanity. The unity of Indonesia. Demo…

Neuendettelsau Mission

(323 words)

Author(s): Becker, Dieter
[German Version] The Missionswerk der Evangelisch-Lutherischen Kirche in Bayern (Mission ¶ Agency of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Bavaria, MWB), founded in 1972, has roots going back to various initiatives of the Neuendettelsau pastor W. Löhe (1808–1872). With the slogan: “Take the gospel to those far off, and you will preserve it for those close at hand,” he began in 1842 to send so-called “emergency helpers” to care for emigrants in North America, and later also pastors to Australia in 1875, and Brazil in 1897. F…

Nommensen, Ludwig Ingwer

(299 words)

Author(s): Becker, Dieter
[German Version] (Feb 6, 1834, island of Nordstrand – May 23, 1918, Sigumpar, North Sumatra), missionary who pioneered the development of the Batak churches, still honored in Indonesia today as its “apostle” and ompu (Batak: “grandfather” or “ancestor”). He began his missionary work in 1863 in Tapanuli (North Sumatra); despite initiall…