Definitions

concordat

Worms, Concordat of

(1122) Compromise between Pope Calixtus II and Emperor Henry V (r. 1106–25) to settle the Investiture Controversy, reached at Worms, Germany. It marked the end of the first phase of conflict between Rome and what was becoming the Holy Roman Empire and made a clear distinction between the spiritual side of a prelate's office and his position as a landed magnate and vassal of the crown. Bishops and abbots were to be chosen by the clergy, but the emperor was to decide contested elections. Those selected were to be invested first with the powers and privileges of their office as vassal (granted by the emperor) and then with their ecclesiastical powers and lands (granted by church authority).

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(1122) Compromise between Pope Calixtus II and Emperor Henry V (r. 1106–25) to settle the Investiture Controversy, reached at Worms, Germany. It marked the end of the first phase of conflict between Rome and what was becoming the Holy Roman Empire and made a clear distinction between the spiritual side of a prelate's office and his position as a landed magnate and vassal of the crown. Bishops and abbots were to be chosen by the clergy, but the emperor was to decide contested elections. Those selected were to be invested first with the powers and privileges of their office as vassal (granted by the emperor) and then with their ecclesiastical powers and lands (granted by church authority).

Learn more about Worms, Concordat of with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Agreement between Napoleon and Pope Pius VII that defined the status of the Roman Catholic Church in France and ended the breach caused by the church reforms of the French Revolution (see Civil Constitution of the Clergy). The Roman Catholic faith was acknowledged as the religion of the majority of the French people but was not proclaimed as the established religion of the state. Napoleon gained the right to nominate bishops, but their offices were conferred by the pope. The government agreed to pay the clergy, but confiscated church property was not restored. The Concordat remained in effect until 1905.

Learn more about Concordat of 1801 with a free trial on Britannica.com.

A concordat usually refers to an agreement between the Apostolic See and a government of a certain country on religious matters, although it is also used in relation to some other agreements in internal United Kingdom and others counties' politics.

Papal concordat

This often included both recognition and privileges for the Catholic Church in a particular country. Privileges might include the right to have Catholic schools, exemptions from certain legal matters and processes, and issues such as taxation as well as the right of a state to influence the selection of bishops within its territory. Although for a time after the Second Vatican Council, which ended in 1965, the term 'concordat' was dropped, it reappeared with the Polish Concordat of 1993 and the Portuguese Concordat of 2004.

The Vatican has been particularly vocal on issues of abortion in Ireland and Portugal, and in attempting to ensure references to Christianity in the prospective EU constitution. Less high profile are agreements concerning taxation and partial state funding of Catholic owned institutions such as orphanages, homes for the elderly and hospices for those suffering from AIDS.

A different model of relations between the Vatican and various states is still evolving in the wake of the Second Vatican Council's Declaration on Religious Liberty, Dignitatis Humanae.

United Kingdom

The term is also used for agreements setting out the framework for co-operation between United Kingdom government departments and the Scottish Government and the Cabinet of the National Assembly for Wales: for examples see DEFRA. In other jurisdictions such as Australia and the United States, the term Memorandum of Understanding, often just MOU, is more prevalent.

List of concordats

Criticism

Secularists criticise concordats as being an infringement of human rights

President Luiz Inácio da Silva of Brazil did not sign a concordat with the Vatican as was hoped by pope Joseph Ratzinger during his visit to Brazil in 2007. The principle of separation of church and state was the basic reason for the desagreement between the parts. Usually Brazil is considered the largest catholic country/population in the world, unofficially however many fallow other creeds or do not live religious lives except nominaly.

External sources

References

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