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Dr Ioannis Kastanas

Abstract

The freedom of worship constitutes the quintessence of religious freedom and is also affiliated with the autonomy enjoyed by church organisations. In the times of a pandemic, the freedom of worship is subject to restrictions in accordance with the requirements of the principle of proportionality. This topical version of religious freedom is influenced significantly by the autonomy enjoyed by the different religious denominations in line with the current State, which outlines the relationships between them. In Cyprus, where the homotaxy system applies to the autocephalous Orthodox Church of Cyprus, a remarkable autonomy pursuant to the State and canon law is generally enjoyed. This is evidenced by the management of the restrictive measures imposed on the freedom of worship during the lockdown phase and the period of the gradual easing of the restrictive measures.

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Keywords

autonomy, religious freedom, freedom of worship, coronavirus, Orthodox Church of Cyprus

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