- This article discusses 'national churches' in the ethnic sense. See National churches in Rome.
National church is a concept of a Christian church associated with a specific ethnic group or nation state. The idea was notably discussed during the 19th century, during the emergence of modern nationalism.
- "a National Church might exist, and has existed, without [Christianity], because before the institution of the Christian Church - as [...] the Levitical Church in the Hebrew Constitution, [and] the Druidical in the Celtic, would suffice to prove".
John Wordsworth, bishop of Salisbury, wrote about the National Church of Sweden in 1911, interpreting the Church of Sweden and the Church of England as national churches of the Swedish and the English peoples, respectively. Lake (1987) traces the development of Presbyterianism in 16th-century England from the status of a "godly minority" which saw itself surrounded by the corrupt or hostile mass of the population, into a "genuine national church".
The concept of a national church remains alive in the Protestantism of England and Scandinavia in particular. While, in a context of England, the national church remains a common denominator for the Church of England, some of the Lutheran "folk churches" of Scandinavia, characterized as national churches in the ethnic sense as opposed to the idea of a state church, emerged in the second half of the 19th century, following the lead of Grundtvig. However, in countries in which the state church (also known as the established church) has the following of the majority of citizens, the state church may also be the national church, and may be declared as such by the government e.g. Church of Denmark, Church of Greece, Church of Iceland.
- Countries 1
- Criticism 2
- See also 3
- References 4
Karl Barth denounced as heretical the tendency of "nationalizing" the Christian God, especially in the context of national churches sanctioning warfare against other Christian nations during World War I.
- Samuel Taylor Coleridge. On the Constitution of the Church and State. Classic Books Company; 2001. ISBN 978-0-7426-8368-6. p. 59.
- Peter Lake, Maria Dowling, Protestantism and the national church in sixteenth century England, Taylor & Francis, 1987, ISBN, 9780709916819, ch. 8 (193ff.)
- Dag Thorkildsen, 'Scandinavia: Lutheranism and national identity', in World Christianities, c. 1815-1914, vol. 8 of The Cambridge history of Christianity, eds. Sheridan Gilley, Brian Stanley, Cambridge University Press, 2006, ISBN 978-0-521-81456-0, pp. 342–358.
- Shadid, W. A. R. (1 January 1995). Religious Freedom and the Position of Islam in Western Europe. Peeters Publishers. p. 11.
- Enyedi, Zsolt; Madeley, John T.S. (2 August 2004). Church and State in Contemporary Europe. Routledge. p. 228.
- Encyclopedia of Protestantism. Infobase Publishing. 1 January 2005. p. 283.
- Ágoston, Gábor; Masters, Bruce Alan (1 January 2009). Encyclopedia of the Ottoman Empire. Infobase Publishing. p. 53.
- Hall, Richard C. (1 January 2012). The Modern Balkans: A History. Reaktion Books. p. 51.
- Venbrux, Eric; Quartier, Thomas; Venhorst, Claudia; Brenda Mathijssen (September 2013). Changing European Death Ways. LIT Verlag Münster. p. 178.
Britannicus (1834). The Church of England. p. 17.
Having, in my last, arrive at the great points which I wished to establish--the apostolicity, independence, and authority of the Church of England; and that she is necessarily the National Church, because Christianity is the National Religion.
- Makari, Peter E. (2007). Conflict & Cooperation: Christian-Muslim Relations in Contemporary Egypt. Syracuse University Press. p. 42.
- Elvy, Peter (1991). Opportunities and Limitations in Religious Broadcasting. Edinburgh: CTPI. p. 23.
- Lorance, Cody (2008). Ethnographic Chicago. p. 140.
- Proctor, James (13 May 2013). Faroe Islands. Bradt Travel Guides. p. 19.
- Denmark, Finland, and Sweden. Britanncia Educational Publishing. 1 June 2013. p. 77.
- Kaplan, Robert B.; Baldauf, Richard B. (2005). Language Planning and Policy in Europe. Multilingual Matters. p. 147.
- Melton, J. Gordon; Baumann, Martin (21 September 2010). Religions of the World: A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Beliefs and Practices. ABC-CLIO. p. 1195.
- Gelder, Craig Van (2008). The Missional Church and Denominations. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing. p. 71.
- Miller, James Edward (2009). The United States and the Making of Modern Greece: History and Power, 1950-1974. Univ of North Carolina Press. p. 12.
- Wilcox, Jonathan; Latif, Zawiah Abdul (1 September 2006). Iceland. Marshall Cavendish. p. 85.
- Ajami, Fouad (30 May 2012). The Syrian Rebellion. Hoover Press. p. 70.
- Rae, Heather (15 August 2002). State Identities and the Homogenisation of Peoples. Cambridge University Press. p. 278.
- Cristofori, Rinaldo; Ferrari, Silvio (28 February 2013). Law and Religion in the 21st Century: Relations between States and Religious Communities. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. p. 194.
- Prizel, Ilya (13 August 1998). National Identity and Foreign Policy: Nationalism and Leadership in Poland, Russia and Ukraine. Cambridge University Press. p. 155.
- Morton, Andrew R. (1994). God's Will in a Time of Crisis: A Colloquium Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Baillie Commission. Edinburgh: CTPI. p. 14.
- Tomasevich, Jozo (1 January 1975). The Chetniks. Stanford University Press. p. 176.
- Gilley, Sheridan; Stanley, Brian (2006). The Cambridge History of Christianity: Volume 8, World Christianities C.1815-c.1914. Cambridge University Press. p. 354.
- West, Barbara A. (1 January 2009). Encyclopedia of the Peoples of Asia and Oceania. Infobase Publishing. p. 845.
- Velychenko, Stephen (1 January 1992). National History as Cultural Process: A Survey of the Interpretations of Ukraine's Past in Polish, Russian, and Ukrainian Historical Writing from the Earliest Times to 1914. Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies Press. p. 199.
Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine. William Blackwood & Sons. 1895. p. 142.
The Church in Wales [is] ... the National Church in every sense of the word, not only theoretically but practically.
- Barth, Ethnics, ed. Braun, transl. Bromiley, New York, 1981, p. 305.
- William Reed Huntington, A national church, Bedell lectures, Scribner's, 1897.