Public Religion

Julian Rivers

in The Law of Organized Religions

Published in print July 2010 | ISBN: 9780199226108
Published online September 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191594243 | DOI:
Public Religion

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Public religion is not a familiar category to English lawyers. This chapter shows that it is well-grounded in two main areas of law: the registration of places of worship and the law of charities. In the case of registration for worship, the avoidance of criminal penalties for unregistered worship is long obsolete and access to privileges obsolescent. Recent changes to the law of charities raise new questions about the definition of charitable religion, and have exposed a secularizing tendency on the part of the Charity Commission. Religious bodies have also lost autonomy as a result of new obligations to account to the Commission. Finally, and by contrast, the ‘ecclesiastical exemption’ continues to offer certain religious bodies an independent role in planning and conservation law.

Keywords: public religion; registration; worship; privileges; Charity Commission; autonomy; ecclesiastical exemption

Chapter.  17107 words. 

Subjects: Human Rights and Immigration

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