List of Reformed denominations

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Reformed churches are a group of Protestant denominations connected by a common Calvinist system of doctrine.



The Dutch Calvinist churches have suffered numerous splits, and there have been some subsequent partial re-unions. Currently there are at least nine existing denominations, including (between brackets the Dutch abbreviation):

Since the Reformation, the Netherlands, as one of the few countries in the world, could be characterised as a mainly Calvinist state. Until the first half of the 20th century, a majority of the Dutch (about 55%) were Calvinist and a large minority (35-40%) were Catholic. Because of large-scale secularisation during the 20th century, these percentages dropped dramatically. Today[when?] only 15-20% of the Dutch (about 2.5 million people) is Calvinist, while 25-30% is Catholic. About 45% is non-religious. Today many orthodox Calvinist Christians in the Netherlands cooperate with Evangelicals in organizations such as the 'Evangelische Omroep' (Evangelical Broadcasting Company), the 'Evangelische Hogeschool' (Evangelical College), and the political party 'ChristenUnie' (ChristianUnion)

Dutch emigrants and missionaries brought Calvinist churches to many other countries outside Europe, including Canada, United States, South Africa, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand.


The Swiss Reformed Churches were started in Zurich by Huldrych Zwingli and spread within a few years to Basle (Johannes Oecolampadius), Berne (Berchtold Haller and Niklaus Manuel), St. Gall (Joachim Vadian), to cities in Southern Germany and via Alsace (Martin Bucer) to France. After Zwingli's early death in 1531, his work was continued by Heinrich Bullinger, the author of the Second Helvetic Confession. The French-speaking cities Neuchatel, Geneva and Lausanne changed to the Reformation ten years later under William Farel and John Calvin coming from France. The Zwingli and Calvin branches each had their theological distinctions, but in 1549, under the lead of Bullinger and Calvin, they came to a common agreement in the Consensus Tigurinus (Zurich Consent), and 1566 in the Second Helvetic Confession. Organizationally, the Reformed Churches in Switzerland remained separate units until today (the Reformed Church of the Canton Zurich, the Reformed Church of the Canton Berne, etc.), the German part more in the Zwingli tradition, in the French part more in the Calvin tradition. Today they are members of the Federation of Swiss Protestant Churches. They are governed synodically and their relation to the respective canton (in Switzerland, there are no church-state regulations on country-level) ranges from independent to close collaboration, depending on historical developments. A distinctive of the Swiss Reformed churches in Zwingli tradition is their historically almost symbiotic link to the state (cantons) which is only loosening gradually in the present.

There are a small number of conservative churches like the Evangelical Reformed Church (Westminster Confession)[1] and the Lausanne Free Church.[2]

A total of 2.4 million Swiss are members of Calvinist churches, according to the 2000 census, which corresponds with 33% of the population. The past decades show a rapid decline in this proportion, coming from 46% in 1970.


The Reformed Church in Hungary, Transylvania and southern Slovakia is one of the largest branches of the Calvinist movement. The Reformed Church is the second largest church in Hungary, it has 4 seminaries in the country (Debrecen, Papa, Budapest, Sarospatak). The Hungarian Reformed Church adopted the Heidelberg Catechism and the Second Helvetic Confession as a definition of their teaching, together the Ecumenical creeds of the Christian Church: Athanasian Creed, Nicene Creed, Chalcedon, and the common creed ("Apostles' Creed"). The Hungarians organised the Calvinist church in 1557 in the Synod of Csenger and adopted the Second Helvetic Confession in 1567 in Debrecen.

The Hungarian Reformed Church maintains educational institutions, almost 80 primary schools, 28 high schools, 47 nurseries and several vocational schools and the Bethesda Hospital. There are diaconal institutions and conference centres.

In 2001, more than 1.6 million people in Hungary identified as members of the Hungarian Reformed Church. Of that number, about 600,000 are considered active members, in 1,249 congregations. The HRC has 27 presbyteries, four districts and a General Synod. In Romania, 700,000 people identified as Calvinist in 800 congregations, nearly all of them ethnic Hungarians living in Transylvania.[3]

There is the more theologically conservative Reformed Presbyterian Church of Central and Eastern Europe, which has approximately 25 congregations in Hungary, Slovakia, Romania and Ukraine. Like the mainline Hungarian Reformed church, from which it split in 1997, the church adheres to the Second Helvetic Confession and the Heidelberg Catechism, but it has also adopted the Westminster Confession, and Shorter and Larger Catechisms.[4][5]

The Reformed Presbyterian Church of Central and Eastern Europe maintains the Károlyi Gáspár Institute of Theology and Missions, located in Miskolc, Hungary.

There is a mission church of the Communion of Reformed Evangelical Churches in Diósd, near Budapest.[6]


Reformed Christian Church in Slovakia was part of the Reformed Church in Hungary until the end of World War I. In 1993, a theological seminary was opened in Komárno. Cathechial schools are in Kosice and Komarno. In Slovakia, 110,000 Calvinists were recorded.[3]


The Reformed Church in Romania consist of two dioceses. These are:

In Transylvania, the Calvinist faith took root in the 16th century. In 1564, a Synod was held in Nagyenyed (today Aiud) when the Calvinist and Lutheran churches separated. This date is the founding date of the Reformed Diocese of Transylvania. Partium (today partially Crișana) used to be a separated geographical area from Transylvania, also ruled by Hungarian/Transylvanian princes. In this region was founded the Királyhágómellék Reformed District. Transylvania was part of Hungary until 1920. The Confessions of these churches are the Apostles Creed, the Heidelberg Catechism. In the church buildings, especially in smaller villages, the men and women sitting separated and the children and those who were not yet married were sitting in the church choir or gallery. The believers are predominantly (95%) Hungarian, so the worship language is also Hungarian. It has 800 congregations and 700,000 members.

  • Evangelical Reformed Church of Romania

A Romanian mission of the United Reformed Churches in North America was founded in Bucharest in 2016.[9]


The German Reformed Church (Reformierte Kirche) forms, together with German Lutheran and united Protestant churches, the umbrella named Protestant Church in Germany (German: Evangelische Kirche in Deutschland) or EKD. The member churches of EKD were formerly the Protestant state churches in German states before the separation of religion and state in 1919. EKD represents, alongside Catholicism, Germany's "mainstream" religious bodies.

The German Reformed Church, unusually, does not trace its origins back to Zwingli or Calvin, but rather to Philipp Melanchthon, Luther's best friend and closest ally. After Melanchthon's death in 1560, extremist Lutherans (from whom Luther had previously distanced himself) accused Melanchthon's successors in the "Philippist" cause of Crypto-Calvinism and mercilessly persecuted and sometimes killed them in several states, especially Saxony. Other states, such as Hesse(-Cassel), remained openly Philippist and Calvinist. Only during the time of Calvin (1509–1564) himself did genuinely Calvinist influences enter the German Calvinist faith; even today, it remains more Philippist than Calvinist.

In the German Empire (1871–1918) some states were Lutheran, some Reformed. King Frederick William III of Prussia united both major Protestant confessions in his domains into the Prussian Union of churches in 1817, allowing congregations to maintain Lutheran or Calvinist confession, or declare their union, also in Bremen (1877), Hesse-Cassel (1817), and Hesse-Darmstadt (1832) Reformed and Lutherans form a union merely in administration. Some states saw unions of Reformed and Lutherans to a united confession, such as Anhalt (1820 in Anhalt-Bernburg, 1827 in Anhalt-Dessau, and 1880 in Anhalt-Köthen), Baden (1821), Nassau (1817) and Bavarian Palatinate (1848), while Lutherans in other states (Bavaria proper, Hamburg, Hanover, Lübeck, the Mecklenburgs, Oldenburg, Saxon Duchies, Saxony, Schaumburg-Lippe, Schleswig-Holstein, and Württemberg) did not followed suit.

The German Reformed Church's finest hour arguably occurred during the Third Reich (1933–1945): although by far not all Calvinist clergy and their flocks opposed the Nazis, the Reformed Church dominated the Confessing Church resistance against Hitler.

As of 2009, German Protestants come in four different guises, all under one national umbrella, but differentiated by region (Landeskirche, usually regions smaller than the states):

  1. Lutheran
  2. Calvinist, namely Evangelical Reformed Church in Bavaria and Northwestern Germany (comprising Reformed congregations in all areas, where Lutherans and Reformed did not unite, but Lippe), and Church of Lippe
  3. Administration-United - in these churches, each parish is either Lutheran, Reformed or united Protestant, and so is the congregation and the Pastor, but all share the same administration
  4. Consensus-United - there is no difference even at the parish level

In Germany, as of 2009, roughly 25 million Germans (less than one-third of the entire population, slightly more than half of German Christians) are Protestant. Of these, less than 2 million are Calvinist. The main coordinating body for Calvinist churches in Germany is the Reformed Alliance.[10]

Smaller, separate denominations include the Evangelical Old-Reformed Church in Lower Saxony, the Union of Evangelical Reformed Churches in Germany, and the episcopally governed Free Reformed Churches of Germany.


In France, the Calvinist Protestants were called Huguenots. The Reformed Church of France survived under persecution from 1559 until the Edict of Nantes (1598), the effect of which was to establish regions in which Protestants could live unmolested. These areas became centers of political resistance under which the Calvinist church was protected until 1628, when La Rochelle, the Protestant center of resistance to Louis XIII, was overrun by a French army blockade. After the Protestant resistance failed, the Reformed Church of France reorganized, and was guaranteed toleration under the Edict of Nantes until the final revocation of toleration in 1685 (Edict of Fontainebleau). The periods of persecution scattered French Reformed refugees to England, Germany, Switzerland, Netherlands, Africa (especially South Africa) and America. Louis XVI granted an edict of toleration. Freedom of religion came with the French Revolution. Napoleon organized state controlled French Reformed church with the Organic Articles in 1802. A free (meaning, not state controlled) synod of the Reformed Church emerged in 1848 and survives in small numbers to the present time. The French refugees established French Reformed churches in the Latin countries and in America.

The first Calvinist churches in France produced the Gallic Confession and French Calvinist confession of faith, which served as models for the Belgic Confession of Faith (1563).

Today, about 300,000 people are members of the Reformed Church of France (now United Protestant Church of France). There is also the smaller Protestant Reformed Church of Alsace and Lorraine and the more conservative National Union of Independent Reformed Evangelical Churches of France (the name of the denomination was changed in 2009).

The Malagazy Protestant Church in France is a Calvinist denomination whose members come from Madagascar. The Union of Free Evangelical Churches in France is another denomination.

Great Britain and Ireland[edit]

The churches with Presbyterian traditions in the United Kingdom have the Westminster Confession of Faith as one of their important confessional documents.

In Wales, there are the Union of Welsh Independents, which is another congregational body. The Presbyterian Church of Wales is one of the biggest Christian denomination in Wales.

In Scotland, presbyterianism was established in 1560 by John Knox who studied in Geneva and planted Calvinism in his home country. The presbyterian churches in the US, Canada, Australia trace their origin back primarily from Scotland.

In Ulster, Northern Ireland and The Republic of Ireland spread the Calvinist faith in the 17th century.

A group of churches called Newfrontiers began in England and also exists elsewhere in the world. This group tends to hold to Calvinist theology, but is also charismatic in its experience.


Historically, the Church of England upheld both Lutheran and Calvinist doctrines.[11] Several continental Calvinist theologians moved to England to aid with the doctrinal and liturgical developments there, including Martin Bucer, Peter Martyr, and Jan Łaski. Especially Calvinistic distinctions of the Church of England include the division of the Ten Commandments after the Calvinist numbering (rather than the Lutheran or Catholic division), the iconoclastic reforms of Edward VI and Elizabeth I,[12] and the Eucharistic doctrine of Receptionism. The Church of England so took part in the Synod of Dort, and monarchs since the Glorious Revolution have sworn in the coronation oath to protect the “true profession of the Gospel, and the Protestant Reformed religion established by law.”

However, the ascendency of William Laud to the archbishopric saw a periodic suppression of pro-Calvinist clergymen under Charles I, and the Oxford Movement of the 19th century sought to further distance the Church of England from its Calvinistic ties. Because of the political success of Anglo-Catholicism there have been a few conservative Reformed movements which have left the Church of England:




It is an Italian historical Protestant denomination. After Protestant Reformation, the small church absorbed Calvinist theology - under the influence of Guillaume Farel- and became the Italian branch of the European Calvinist churches. In 1975, the Waldensian Church (45,000 members circa, plus some 15,000 affiliates in Argentina and Uruguay) joined forces with the Italian Methodist Church (5,000) to form the Union of Methodist and Waldensian Churches. It is member of both the World Alliance of Reformed Churches and of the World Methodist Council, due to its nature of a united church.

It is a Reformed Baptist denomination in Italy. As a member of the World Reformed Fellowship, this network of churches recover the Calvinist tradition of Pietro Martire Vermigli and Girolamo Zanchi.

It is a mission of the Presbyterian Church of Brazil in Italy.


It is the oldest Protestant community in Ukraine, established during the 16th century. 70-75% of Transcarpathian Hungarians are followers of the Calvinist faith. The church currently has three dioceses with about 120,000 - 140,000 members and is itself a member of the World Communion of Reformed Churches.

This church was started by missionaries of the Presbyterian Church in America and has 12 congregations and missions with 11 ordained national pastors; it maintains a Calvinist seminary in Kyiv.










Czech Republic[edit]











  • Christ Church of Oulu[16]


  • Reformed Church in Durrës[17][18] mission of the PCA
  • Emmanuel reformed church in Tirana


  • International Presbyterian Church, Baku[19]





Congregational churches[edit]

American Samoa[edit]

Cook Island[edit]


French Polynesia[edit]

Marshall Islands[edit]


New Caledonia[edit]

New Zealand[edit]




Solomon Islands[edit]



Western Samoa[edit]

North America[edit]


The PCA is the second largest Presbyterian denomination in the United States, after the PC(USA). Its motto is: "Faithful to the Scriptures, True to the Reformed Faith and Obedient to the Great Commission of Jesus Christ."
The Presbyterian Church in Canada, formed in June 1875, as a union of 4 Presbyterian groups in the Dominion of Canada (created in 1867); These "Continuing Presbyterians", did not join the United Church of Canada in 1925, of Presbyterians, along with Methodists, Congregationalists, and Union Churches.
Most Presbyterian churches adhere to the Westminster Confession of Faith, but the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), in order to embrace the historical expressions of the whole Reformed tradition as found in the United States, has adopted a Book of Confessions which includes the Westminster Confession of Faith.

Continental Reformeds[edit]

Associated with the Dutch Reformed (Gereformeerde Gemeenten (Dutch)) churches in the Netherlands.
One of the most conservative of all Reformed/Calvinist denominations, the PRCA separated from the Christian Reformed Church in the 1920s in a schism over the issue of common grace.
The majority of the original Reformed Church in the United States, which was founded in 1725, merged with Evangelical Synod of North America (a mix of German Reformed & Lutheran theologies) to form the Evangelical and Reformed Church in 1940 (which would merge with the Congregational Christian Churches in 1957 to form the United Church of Christ) leaving the Eureka Classis serving as a Continuing church of the Reformed Church in the United States until 1986, when it was dissolved to form the Synod of the Reformed Church in the United States
The Reformed Church in America (RCA) is the oldest Dutch Reformed denomination in the United States, dating back from the mid-17th century


Reformed Anglicans[edit]

Reformed Baptist[edit]






East Timor[edit]


Republic of South Korea[edit]

Most Presbyterian denominations share same name, the Presbyteian Church in Korea, tracing back their history to the United Presbyterian Assembly. There are 15 million Protestants in South Korea, about 9 millions are Presbyterians and there are more than 100 Presbyterian denominations. Before the Korean War Presbyterians were very strong in North Korea, many fled to South, and established their own Presbyterian denominations.[27] The Presbyterian Churches are by far the largest Protestant churches with well over 20 000 congregations. For more information see Presbyterianism in South Korea.

Hong Kong[edit]



(source: reformiert-online)










Sri Lanka[edit]





  • Türkiye Protestan Reform Kiliseleri (Protestant Reformed Churches of Turkey) subscribes to Westminster Standards and the Three Forms of Unity[59]
  • Antalya Protestant Church - subscribes the Westminster Standards -not a denomination








Burkina Faso[edit]


Central African Republic[edit]


Democratic Republic of Congo[edit]

Republic of Congo[edit]



Equatorial Guinea[edit]







Ivory Coast[edit]












The various Reformed churches of Nigeria formed the Reformed Ecumenical Council of Nigeria in 1991 to further cooperation.

South Africa[edit]

According to the census of 2001, more than 3.2 million people recorded themselves as Reformed. This however is fast decline compared to the 1996 census, when still 3.9 million people were Reformed. Particularly amongst black and coloured people the Reformed churches lost many members, while the number of Reformed whites remained status quo due to mass emigration.


Sierra Leone[edit]











Central America and the Caribbean[edit]




Costa Rica[edit]


El Salvador[edit]



Dominican Republic[edit]








Puerto Rico[edit]

Trinidad and Tobago[edit]

South America[edit]




Reformed churches[edit]

Presbyterian Churches[edit]

Congregational churches[edit]




French Guiana[edit]







Middle East[edit]






See also[edit]

Individual church congregations
International organizations


  1. ^ "ERKWB Schweiz - Homepage der Evangelisch-reformierten Kirche Westminster Bekenntnisses in der Schweiz". ERKWB Schweiz.
  2. ^ "Lausanne Free Church English Speaking Switzerland".
  3. ^ a b " - Nyitóoldal".
  4. ^ "Welcome to Reformed Presbyterian Church of Central and Eastern Europe - Reformed Presbyterian Church of Central and Eastern Europe".
  5. ^ "Közép- és Kelet Európai Református Presbiteriánus Egyház".
  6. ^ "Budapesti Reformált Evangéliumi Egyház". Budapesti Reformált Evangéliumi Egyház.
  7. ^ "Királyhágómelléki Református Egyházkerület".
  8. ^ Egyházkerület, Erdélyi Református. "Erdélyi Református Egyházkerület".
  9. ^ "Istoric". Biserica Evanghelică Reformată (in Romanian). Retrieved 2019-05-02.
  10. ^ Deutschland, Reformierter Bund in. "- Reformierter Bund in Deutschland".
  11. ^ Matthews, W.R. The Thirty-Nine Articles. London: Hodder & Stoughton. 1961. (Matthews acknowledged the Calvinism of the Articles while disagreeing with them.)
  12. ^ The Royal Injunctions of 1559. See Art. ii, xxv, xxxv & xlvii <>
  13. ^ "St. Andrew's Church Lisbon".
  14. ^ "お金借りる|お金借りる即日ならどこ?おすすめは?".
  15. ^ "CREC Churches of Eurasia :: CREC Eurasia". Archived from the original on 2012-12-08. Retrieved 2013-03-17.
  16. ^ "Christ Church of Oulu". Christ Church of Oulu.
  17. ^ "Kisha e Reformuar Ungjillore Durres – Të njohim Krishtin & Ta bëjmë Krishtin të njohur".
  18. ^ "Log In or Sign Up to View".
  19. ^ IPC, The (6 April 2016). "Our Churches". Archived from the original on 5 March 2016. Retrieved 27 March 2016.
  20. ^ LadiSoft. "Hungarian Reformed Church".
  21. ^
  22. ^ "Fellowship of Reformed Baptist Churches in New Zealand".
  23. ^ "해외한인장로회 총회 - The Korean Presbyterian Church Abroad".
  24. ^ "".[permanent dead link]
  25. ^ "International Reformed Baptist Church Directory, Bangladesh".
  26. ^ "Bangladesh Bible Presbyterian Church". Archived from the original on 2013-04-12. Retrieved 2013-03-14.
  27. ^ "Touched by Devotion in South Korea". 4 October 2010. Archived from the original on 9 July 2017. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
  28. ^ Independent Reformed Church
  29. ^ "Vinukonda Missionary & Medical Fellowship". Vinukonda Missionary & Medical Fellowship.
  30. ^ "Reformed Baptist Fellowship of India". Archived from the original on 2013-06-11. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
  31. ^ "Heritage – Malankara Mar Thoma Syrian Church". Retrieved 2021-08-23.
  32. ^ King, Daniel (12 December 2018). "Chapter Seven. The Syrian Church Denominations. & Chapter Twenty-Three. The Liturgies of the Syriac Churches". The Syriac World. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-317-48211-6.
  33. ^ "Mission & Vision". St. Thomas Evangelical Church of India (steci) is an episcopal Church. Retrieved 2021-08-23.
  34. ^ "Official website". Archived from the original on 2013-05-01.
  35. ^ "Gereja Injili Indonesia Hok Im Tong".
  36. ^ "Gereja Kristen Indonesia – Situs Arsip – Situs Arsip Untuk Gereja Kristen Indonesia".
  37. ^ Fasse, Christoph. "Address data base of Reformed churches and institutions".
  38. ^ "Sinode GKJ". Sinode GKJ. Retrieved 2021-08-23.
  39. ^ Fasse, Christoph. "Address data base of Reformed churches and institutions".
  40. ^ "GKKB Jemaat Pontianak".
  41. ^ "Home". Christ Evangelical Reformed Church (CERC).
  42. ^ "Church Information - Reformed Baptist Churches Malaysia".
  43. ^ "Aashish Presbyterian Church". Archived from the original on 2013-01-04. Retrieved 2013-03-14.
  44. ^ "".
  45. ^ "Sutlej Reformed Church of Pakistan".
  46. ^ "Home". Bastion of Truth Reformed Churches in the Philippines.
  47. ^ host, just. "Welcome -".
  48. ^ "Website of the Christian Reformed Church in the Philippines". Archived from the original on 2009-02-21. Retrieved 2011-06-30.
  49. ^ "".
  50. ^ Archived 2012-07-03 at the Wayback Machine
  51. ^ "". Archived from the original on 2013-06-22. Retrieved 2013-03-15.
  52. ^ "Cubao Reformed Baptist Church - Reformation Philippines". Cubao Reformed Baptist Church - Reformation Philippines.
  53. ^ "PRC Missions in the Philippines".
  54. ^ "massage erotique rodez maisons closes espagne -". Archived from the original on 2008-08-28. Retrieved 2013-04-04.
  55. ^ "Reformation Conference 2017".
  56. ^ "CERC".
  57. ^ "Pilgrim Covenant - Reformed Church in Singapore".
  58. ^ "Shalom Church (Reformed Baptist)".
  59. ^ "İzmir Protestan Kilisesi".
  61. ^ "Christian Reformed Church". Christian Reformed Church.
  62. ^ "Authorities Arrest 80-Member Presbyterian Congregation - WWRN - World-wide Religious News".
  63. ^ "ERP Church". Archived from the original on 2014-01-04. Retrieved 2018-09-19.
  64. ^ Grace Reformed, Baptist, Church. (2018). "Grace Reformed Baptist, Church". Grace Reformed Baptist, Church.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  65. ^ "A Reformed Baptist in Namibia".
  66. ^ "Sola5". Archived from the original on 2013-10-15. Retrieved 2013-06-03.
  67. ^ "Reformed Churches » Religion in Zimbabwe".
  68. ^
  69. ^ "Reformed Presbyterian Church in Haiti - Église Presbytérienne Réformée d'Haiti".
  70. ^ "Inicio - Iglesia Bíblica del Señor Jesucristo". Iglesia Bíblica del Señor Jesucristo.
  71. ^ "Inicio".
  72. ^ "Sinodo de la Iglesia Evangelica y Reformada de Honduras - Historia". Archived from the original on 2008-03-19. Retrieved 2008-10-14.
  73. ^ "". Archived from the original on 2011-09-21.
  74. ^ "".
  75. ^ "Bem-vindo a Igreja Anglicana".
  76. ^
  77. ^ "Igreja Presbiteriana Chinesa de Curitiba".
  78. ^ "Jovens, livres com CRISTO!".
  79. ^ "Home". Archived from the original on 2012-12-31. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
  80. ^ "St Andrews Scots Memorial Church". Archived from the original on 2012-12-13. Retrieved 2013-03-31.

External links[edit]