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Protestant denomination founded in the 18th century. It traces its origins to the Unity of Brethren, a 15th-century Hussite movement in Bohemia and Moravia. The original Brethren movement was eroded by persecution, but it was renewed in 1722 at Herrnhut, a theocratic community established in Saxony. In America the Moravians founded Bethlehem, Pa. (1740), and several other settlements, and carried out missionary work among the Indians. The Moravians ordain bishops but are governed by synods of elected representatives; they are guided by the Bible as their only rule of faith and worship.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Moravian Church, visit Britannica.com.
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