established church


established church
a church that is recognized by law, and sometimes financially supported, as the official church of a nation. Also called state church. Cf. national church.
[1650-60]

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      a church recognized by law as the official church of a state or nation and supported by civil authority. Though not strictly created by a legal contract, the legal establishment is more like a contractual entity than like anything else and, therefore, ordinarily cannot be varied or repudiated by only one party to it. The church is not free to make changes in such things as doctrine, order, or worship without the consent of the state. In accepting such obligations, the church usually, though not always, receives financial support and other special privileges.

      Among numerous examples of established churches or state religions are the following: Anglicanism in England, Lutheranism in the Scandinavian countries, Roman Catholicism in Italy and Spain, Judaism in Israel, Islām in Saudi Arabia and Egypt, Buddhism in Thailand and Sikkim, and Shintō in Japan before World War II. In pluralistic societies and under modern forms of government, religious establishment has tended, on the whole, to diminish in importance.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Established church — Church Church (ch[^u]rch), n. [OE. chirche, chireche, cherche, Scot. kirk, from AS. circe, cyrice; akin to D. kerk, Icel. kirkja, Sw. kyrka, Dan. kirke, G. kirche, OHG. chirihha; all fr. Gr. kyriako n the Lord s house, fr. kyriako s concerning a… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • established church — n. 1. a church officially recognized by the government and supported as a national institution 2. [E C ] the Church of England …   English World dictionary

  • Established church — An established church is a church officially sanctioned and supported by the government of a country, e.g. the Church of England in the United Kingdom.Church of EnglandThe Church of England is the established church in England, of which the… …   Wikipedia

  • established church — noun the church that is recognized as the official church of a nation • Hypernyms: ↑religion, ↑faith, ↑organized religion * * * noun : a church that is recognized by law as the official church of a nation, that is supported by civil authority,… …   Useful english dictionary

  • established church — estab′lished church′ n. rel a church that is recognized by law, and sometimes financially supported, as the official church of a nation …   From formal English to slang

  • established church — noun Date: circa 1702 a church recognized by law as the official church of a nation or state and supported by civil authority …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • established church — noun a church that is officially recognized as a national institution by a government; in England it is the Church of England …   Wiktionary

  • Established Church —    The Church designated the official Church of the nation …   Who’s Who in Christianity

  • established church — /əˌstæblɪʃt ˈtʃɜtʃ/ (say uh.stablisht cherch), /ɛs / (say es ) noun a church recognised and sometimes partly supported by the state …   Australian English dictionary

  • Established Church of Scotland —     Established Church of Scotland     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Established Church of Scotland     The religious organization which has for three centuries and a half claimed the adherence of the majority of the inhabitants of Scotland, may be… …   Catholic encyclopedia


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