Commission on Religious Matters of the Vinkovci Municipal Assembly
In 1963 the Commission on Religious Matters of Vinkovci Municipal Assembly began to work which was charged to control religious institutions on the territory of Vinkovci Municipality. The Commission worked in the conditions of centralist socialist dictatorships and was under direct surveillance by the Republic Commission on Religious Matters which acted at the Executive Council of the Parliament of the Socialist Republic of Croatia, that is to say, under the direct control of League of Communists of Croatia. The archival records of the collection were created by the same Commission on the territory of Vinkovci Municipality from 1963 to 1993.
The primary goal of the Commission was to follow the work of religious communities, since a religion was conceived as a negative factor for the building of the socialist society. Besides, the Commission was ensued after the period of repression, first of all against Catholic Church, but also other religious communities (1945-1960). In the time of the so-called liberalization of Yugoslav regime it had the function of normalization and dialogues between government and churches. The pinnacle was Protocol between the Vatican and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1966. That event meant the establishment of diplomatic relations of two parts since 1970. It happened all in the shadow of the Second Vatican Council that was passing in the atmosphere of seeking dialogue of the Church with socialist regimes on the Eastern Europe. Later, it was well known as the Vatican Ostpolitik inaugurated by the Pope Paul VI. The collection testifies about the attempt control that part of society, in this case of religious institutions, which were conceived unreliable for the socialist regime and its ideology. Apart of the Roman Catholic Church which was the most numerous and organized religious community, the regime was also controlling other churches, Serbian Orthodox Churches, Greco-Catholic Church and Jewish and Evangelical communities as well. In the special focus of the commission were the religious activities marked as those which propagated „anti-socialist moral“ in the public like the priest homilies, public missions and teaching of catechism, publishing activities, religious press and books, influence on the young people. No less important were issues of the building of churches and the problems about confiscation of church properties.
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