Brazil (Modern World Nations) by Harry Greenbaum

By Harry Greenbaum

Those information-packed volumes offer complete overviews of every nation's humans, geography, background, govt, economic climate, and tradition

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The rights of women have improved substantially during the past three decades. Even so, their salaries and job opportunities still lag far behind those available to North American women. Even today, there are distinct differences in how the sexes participate in society. Women tend to marry at a much earlier age than men do. Men, on the other hand, often delay marriage until they feel that they can support a wife and family. Poor women have long been expected to work outside of their own family.

The position of the Catholic Church has also been hindered by its lack of success in recruiting priests. The shortage of priests is especially severe in rural areas. Church authorities are quite concerned over the fact that today only about one-fifth of all Catholics attend mass and participate in church activities on a regular basis. The Brazilian Catholic Church leadership demonstrated considerable courage during the time the nation was governed by a military dictatorship. During the 1960s and 1970s, when military dictators restricted the freedom of the Brazilian people, many priests, bishops, and cardinals strongly and effectively protested against the human rights violations that were carried out by the government.

2 million, or approximately 19 percent of the country’s people were Protestant. This growth was largely brought about through massive conversions. It has also been influenced by the immigration of many non-Catholics into Brazil during the last half-century. q 2/26/03 11:34 PM Page 46 46 Brazil active in Brazil. Their efforts have been directed most heavily at poor people in rural areas. Evangelical and Pentecostal missionary groups have been especially effective in winning converts. During the period of the Inquisition several centuries ago, many Portuguese Jews fled to Brazil.

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