Division of resonsibility
A law of 1865, in response to the needs of a changing society, separated local government from parish administration in rural areas. In 1870, a new church law, separating the church from the state, had a significant effect on the functions of the church and its parishes. Responsibility for education, healthcare and care for the poor was transferred to the municipalities. To this day, these are the most important tasks of municipalities, and the ones on which most resources are expended.
Parishes retained responsibility for primarily ecclesiastical tasks, and also for the provision of funerals and the keeping of public records. The church's responsibility with regard to the provision of funerals continues to be regulated by parliament. With the establishment of the Population Register Centre in 1968, most of the church's responsibility for the keeping of public records was transferred to the state.
The state is still responsible for military and prison chaplaincy. The work of military and prison chaplains is overseen by diocesan chapters. Staff training throughout the church is undertaken within the framework of publicly funded education.