Christianity: Eastern Catholicism
FOUNDED: Twelfth century C.E.
RELIGION AS A PERCENTAGE OF WORLD POPULATION: 0.2 percent
The Eastern Catholic Churches are Eastern Churches that obey the authority of the Roman Catholic Church. They are also called the Catholic Churches of Eastern Rites and the Uniate Churches (because of their union with Rome). These churches maintain their own ecclesiastical traditions and rites—sometimes with minor changes influenced by the Latin tradition—and preserve certain levels of autonomy and self-organization but have otherwise accepted the dogmatic teaching of the Roman Catholic Church.
There are more than 20 Eastern Catholic Churches, with followers all over the world. The different churches officially united with Rome at various times between 1182 and 1961. Most new adherents are in eastern Europe, the Middle East, India, Egypt, western Europe, and North America.
The Eastern Catholic Churches trace their origin to the twelfth century, when...