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Excommunication And Moral Discipline In Hungarian Reformed Communities

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Chapter Summary

This chapter considers the role of excommunication in the exercise of moral discipline in the Hungarian Reformed Church during the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. It outlines the institutional framework within which moral discipline was exercised in Hungary, and the justifications offered for the need to excommunicate troublesome church members. Evidence is then considered about how the power to exclude church members was applied in local communities using records of visitations in the villages of Zemplén county and the records of the parish presbytery in the town of Kiskomárom. Analysis of these sources raises questions about the effectiveness of Reformed moral disciplinary techniques and about the social impact of the power to exclude people from the church's services and sacraments.

Keywords: Hungarian Reformed Church; Kiskomárom; Zemplén county



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