Freedom of religion and Protestantism: historical and contemporary context
The problem of freedom of religion in the year of the 90th anniversary of the Reformation is relevant. It can not but attract the attention of researchers, experts, believers - Protestants and non-Protestants. Half a millennium of Europeans, and with them a part of Americans live in a new religious and ideological reality, which is fundamentally different from the previous one, mainly one-or two-culturally, with its diversity. And here a special role belongs to Protestantism as one of the consequences of the Reformation of 1517. By studying the Protestant foundations of faith, the life of his followers, the thoughts of his ideologues, you realize that freedom of conscience, freedom of religion is not an empty sound or abstraction, but values that are chosen and endured by Protestants. The right to profess his faith, to honor God in his own way paid for thousands of killed, persecuted, imprisoned, robbed, who did not renounce faith, did not renounce freedom of conscience. Until now, Protestants are the most consistent defenders of religious freedom, since they remember the price that had to be paid for their own convictions and religious confidences in most of Europe and America. Although the vast majority of Protestants have long been historical, and somewhere even dominant churches, they generally consistently continue to defend not only their rights, where they are violated, but also the rights of other religious minorities in countries of their historical origin and spread.