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Varieties Of Religious Solidarity

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Chapter Summary

The history of religion illustrates a wide variety of relationships between religious ideas and solidary interests, be it as a motive, as an aim or as an effect. Social solidarity is displayed in an address to the needs of one's fellows and as an expression of love for one's neighbour. The major world religions accommodate a variety of solidary practices that emphasize the spiritual significance of social solidarity, especially focused in acts of giving, although emphases may differ. This chapter refers to some normative assumptions that underlie the idea of religious solidarity, by taking the social teaching of the Catholic Church as an example. Subsequently, it presents some European data that offer an insight into the empirical characteristics of the solidary structure of religion in Europe. Finally, the chapter offers some evaluative remarks in which the author interprets varieties of religious solidarity from an institutional perspective.

Keywords: Catholic Church; Europe; religious solidarity



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