Re: Financing Churches in Slovakia
> Over the next 10 years (as I recall) the subsidies fromAs the linked article says clearly, nothing of the sort has happened. Government support for the churches has doubled in the past decade.
> the government would gradually decrease while the
> Churches were expected to become more self reliant on
> Church member contributions.
The article merely describes a possible beginning of a discussion of the issues.
As things are, and have been for centuries, the government pays:
--- all the clergy's salaries, while it has no say over how many clergymen and -women are ordained;
--- it pays all the religious schools, including the schools of divinity and one whole university, while it has no say over how many students attend it for free (there is no tuition in Slovakia);
--- it pays for mandatory religious courses in all schools (which can be optionally substituted by ethics classes, which are, however, sometimes taught by the same clergy who teach the religious classes);
--- the government pays for the maintenance of all the church buildings;
--- it also pays for the whole administration of the churches, foreign travel on business, etc.
The single condition for all of the above is that the church/religious group be "recognized," i.e., meet certain criteria of membership (or "traditional status" in the case of the Jewish religious group, which was decimated during WW II). As the article says, there currently are 18 such churches/religious organizations in Slovakia.
BTW, the original article and info about the author is here:
The previously posted link is, unfortunately, to a blog that merely copied it hoping to generate internet traffic to itself.