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Postcommuni st Believers in a Postmodern World Christianity and Human Rights Conference Samford University, 2004.

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Presentation on theme: "Postcommuni st Believers in a Postmodern World Christianity and Human Rights Conference Samford University, 2004."— Presentation transcript:

1 Postcommuni st Believers in a Postmodern World Christianity and Human Rights Conference Samford University, 2004

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3 Timeline AD 864 Christianization of Bulgaria AD 933 Golden Century AD 1396 Ottoman Occupation AD 1878 Liberation of Bulgaria AD 1944 Communist Revolution AD 1989 Fall of the Berlin Wall

4 Religious Content

5 Confessions Act of Status of Religious Confessions 2.Registration with the Government 3.Relationship between Church and State 4.Religious Activities 5.Religious Freedom

6 Status of Religious Confessions 1.No definitive statement of traditional and non-traditional religious confessions. 2.Designates the Bulgarian Orthodox Church as a traditional religious confession. 3.The special privileges create lack of equality between the religious confessions. 4.The Act ignores needs of minority religious and ethnic groups.

7 Registration with the Government 1.All denominations, except the Orthodox Church, must register. 2.There is no provision of the registration requirements. 3.Type of limitations are unclear. 4.No procedures for denial. 5.No procedure for public opinion. 6.The role of the Directorate of Religious Affairs is unclear. 7.The lack of experts remains unaddressed. 8.Only organizations with centralized structure can register.

8 Relationship between Church and State 1.The Directorate of Religious Affairs is presumed as supreme expert. 2.Financial support is provided for the Eastern Orthodox Church. 3.There is no concern with enforced regional regulations. 4.Enforces the symphony between the state and the Eastern Orthodox Church as a rule on Protestants. 5.Presumes that the Orthodox Church is unable to solve its own problems. 6.Allows unfettered government interference. 7.Enforces registration in order to exercise maximum control.

9 Religious Activities 1.Public worship is prohibited without registration. 2.No category concerning foreign missionaries. 3.No provision for chaplaincy or pastoral care in the army, prisons, hospitals and care institutions. 4.Formation of political parties along religious lines is prohibited. 5.Denominational hospitals, social centers and educational institutions are encouraged without concrete mechanisms for their realization.

10 Religious Freedom 1.Lack of atmosphere for preventing of discrimination and harassments based on religious convictions. 2.Does not contain definite procedures or substantive criteria. 3.Failure to recognize freedom of conscience, as well as the right not to believe. 4.No regulation on the right and practice not to believe. 5. Freedom of religions shall not be directed against national security, public order, peoples health and the morals or the rights and freedoms of persons under the jurisdiction of the republic of Bulgaria or other states.

11 Church in the Hands of an Angry State


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