By Richard Clogg

Greece has ordinarily been essentially the most ethnically and religiously homogeneous nations within the Balkans. within the census (1951) to list spiritual association and mom tongue, ninety seven in keeping with cent of the inhabitants gave their faith as Orthodox Christian and ninety five consistent with cent their mom tongue as Greek. but there are small non secular, linguistic and ethnic minorities in Greece, and the Nineties witnessed a wide inflow of foreigners, usually from japanese Europe, amounting to up to 10 according to cent of the native-born inhabitants. Little has been released in English hitherto in this topic. This booklet has chapters on, inter alia, the outdated Calendarists, Catholocs, Evangelicals, Jews, Muslims, Armenians, Vlachs, Slavs and Sarakatsani.

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On the other hand, the major holidays attract large crowds. The changes made by the Second Vatican Council have affected the church. The priest's vestments are modernized and the altars have been turned around so that the celebrant faces the congregation. There is much more of a dialogue between priest and people, with singing and public recitation of prayers, than was found thirty years ago. A major change is the use of the spoken Greek language in all church services creating better understanding of the meaning of the Liturgy.

Rhodes and Thessaloniki, with 1,500 in the former city and 2,900 Catholics in the latter, do not have resident hierachs but are served by apostolic administrators under the direction of Athens and Corfu. The Catholics of Corfu number about 3,000 individuals. The bishops work together closely. Documents and policy statements are issued in the name of the Holy Synod of the Catholic Hierarchy of Greece made up of the four resident Latin bishops of the country. 9 Catholic parishes are located in Piraeus, Patras, Volos and Larissa.

For example, when in 1989 the Witnesses applied to have their ministers excused from military service (as are ministers of the 'known' religions) the military authoritie·s requested a ruling from the Ministry of Education's Directorate of Religions. IO In a court case decided in 1991, in Tripolis, Jehovah's Witnesses brought charges against certain individuals whom they accused of publicly and verbally assaulting them on account of their religious activities. 1\ 56 57 Structure, dogma, activities The Evangelical Churches of Asia Minor had adopted the 'congregational' system of self-government under which the entire membership, acting as a democratically-ruled unit, controlled the affairs of the church and selected its minister, whose qualifications consisted of personal llltegrity and faith, and knowledge of the Gospel.

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