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Denominations

(208 words)

Author(s): Weber, Daniela
Denominations(from Lat., denominare, ‘to name’) are legally equal religious bodies. Originally only Protestant communities formed in the United States were called denominations. Today the designation denotes a religious community of likeminded individuals formed on the groundwork of a common belief, even if they come from other religions, as in the case of the American Native Church. Denominations are dependent on common conceptions of value and reciprocal incumbency of duties, and require their m…

Conversion

(933 words)

Author(s): Weber, Daniela
Determination of the Concept 1. ‘Conversion’ (Lat, conversio, ‘return,’ ‘transformation’) denotes a transit from one religious community to another, most often in connection with a new religious experience. Originally, in Christianity, conversi denoted non-ordained monks or women in a religious community/ order. Later, the concept was broadened to apply to Jews who had converted to Christianity, and to fallen-away Catholics who had returned to the Church. Since the Reformation, the concept has also been applied to the case of…