Calvinism and Puritans. In 1534, the English Parliament ended all payments by the English clergy and laity to the Catholic Churh and gave King Henry VIII sole jurisdiction over high ecclesiastical appointments.
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In 1534, the English Parliament ended all payments by the English clergy and laity to the Catholic Churh and gave King Henry VIII sole jurisdiction over high ecclesiastical appointments.
Act of Succession (1534)--made Anne Boleyn’s children legitimate heirs to the throne of England
Act of Supremacy (1534)--declared Henry “the only supreme head in earth of the church of England”
The changes made in 1534 were important, but not drastic. Many thought that the changes were insufficient; they thought that the church needed to be “purified.” The Puritans were most concerned with the lack of distinction between devotion and ritual. They wanted to form a new church, but this was illegal.
The Puritans who came to Massachusetts Bay were not Separatists; they identified themselves as bona fide members of the Church of England. Many of the pilgrims on the Mayflower were non-believers. Of 102 passengers, 62 were not religious people. Of the remainder, there was no ordained clergyman. From a religious perspective, the colony failed.
The next group had stricter rules; some of the people believed they were Utopians.
taken from A Handbook to Literature, Fourth Edition
the natural inability of human beings to exercise free will, since they inherited corruption from Adam’s fall
God “elects” who is to be be saved, despite their inability to perform saving works
Grace is made available in advance, but only to the “elect.”
The predetermined elect inevitably persevere in the path of holiness.
Human corruption is partially atoned for by Christ. This atonement is provided to the elect through the Holy Spirit, giving them the power to attempt to obey God’s Will as it is revealed in the Bible.
This system developed both zeal and intolerance on the part of the elect. It did, however, foster education, which in New England was regarded as religious duty. To this attitude of the Calvinistic Puritans may be traced much of the inspiration for
The cold climate and tough soil helped produce tough-minded Calvinists. Death was an ever-present possibility in Colonial life. As people’s view of God gets more remote, they get more comfortable.