Part II

Gerard GONZALES, Ecclesial Autonomy in the Case-law of the European Court of Human Rights
In its collective dimension,it is difficult to accommodate freedom of religion with contestations which could address issues related to its internal, doctrinal and organizational union. The principle of ecclesial autonomy enlightens, within the case law of the European Court of Human Rights, this independence so much desired. However, the isolation is far from being complete and human rights are sometimes involved in conflicts, either individual or collective, from which ecclesial organizations do not escape. The principle of autonomy of the religious communities – which a relative principle, especially regarding laic employees – remains however intact and gains force in favor of the principle of subsidiary.

Key-words: ecclesial autonomy, European Court of Human Rights, freedom of religions, principle of subsidiarity

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