Churches have not been simply passive victims or beneficiaries of economic change. Some religious organizations have been large enough to influence the economy. The great European monasteries were agricultural as well as spiritual powerhouses. Most religions have some sort of resource that has to be managed. The Church of Christian Science protects and promotes the works of Mary Baker Eddy. The Church of Scientology puts considerable effort into protecting the copyright of L. Ron Hubbard’s writings. They may have particular principles that constrain them-nineteenth-century Methodist chapel trustees, for example, would not hire out their halls for social events that involved drinking alcohol or gambling-but like any secular organization, churches have to deal with matters that fall into the remit of economics. The most common subject debated by the trustees of Methodist chapels was not the advance of Methodism or the spiritual needs of the people: it was the cost of repairing or replacing the heating system.
|Title of host publication||Religions as Brands|
|Subtitle of host publication||New Perspectives on the Marketization of Religion and Spirituality|
|Editors||Jean-Claude Usunier, Jörg Stolz|
|Number of pages||14|
|ISBN (Print)||9781409467557, 9781138546240|
|Publication status||Published - 28 Dec 2013|
|Name||AHRC/ESRC Religion and Society Series|
Bruce, S. (2013). Authority and Freedom: Economics and Secularization. In J-C. Usunier, & J. Stolz (Eds.), Religions as Brands: New Perspectives on the Marketization of Religion and Spirituality (pp. 191-204).  (AHRC/ESRC Religion and Society Series). Routledge.