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The Protestant Reformation (1450-1565)

The Protestant Reformation (1450-1565). Causes of the Reformation. 1. Crises of the 14 th & 15 th centuries hurt the prestige of the Church and clergy Avignon Papacy Great Schism People were becoming tired of being dependent on the Church and the constraints it enforced

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The Protestant Reformation (1450-1565)

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  1. The Protestant Reformation (1450-1565)

  2. Causes of the Reformation • 1. Crises of the 14th & 15th centuries hurt the prestige of the Church and clergy • Avignon Papacy • Great Schism • People were becoming tired of being dependent on the Church and the constraints it enforced • 2. Corruption in the Catholic Church • Simony-sale of church offices • Pluralism—an official holding more than one office at a time • Absenteeism—an official not fulfilling the duties of an office, but still receiving payment and privileges

  3. Causes Corruption cont’d • Nepotism—favoring family members in the appointment of church offices • Moral decline of the Papacy • Pope Alexander VI had affairs and children out of wedlock • 20% of all priests in Trent kept concubines in early 16th century • Rodrigo Borgia • Clerical Ignorance—many priests were illiterate • Sale of indulgences-pay money to the Church to absolve one’s sins

  4. Causes • 3. Renaissance humanism • Better educated people were more critical of the church • Growing individualism meant people chafed under the power of the Church • 4. Political Circumstances were favorable • New Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V was young and trying to control a vast realm. He also faced attacks from France and Ottoman Turks during the critical early years of Luther’s protest • 5. Reformers emphasized piety and a personal relationship with God. • John Wyclif & the Lollards—England • Stressed Bible was sole authority and a personal communion with God

  5. Causes • John Hus—Czech • Similar ideas to Wyclif • Burned at the stake for his views • Erasmus—In Praise of Folly • criticized the corruption of the Church and hypocrisy of the clergy • 6. Printing Press • Invention of movable type was invented in 1450 by Johann Gutenberg • Helped spread ideas before Catholics could squash them • Intensified intellectual criticism of the Church • Protestant ideals appealed to the urban and the literate

  6. The Emergence of Protestantism in Europe

  7. Germany • Luther troubled by the sale of indulgences • Dominican friar Tetzel was selling indulgences in Wittenberg in 1517 • Luther posted his 95 theses on the door of the castle church in Wittenberg on October 31, 1517 • What were some of Luther’s complaint? • Luther slowly but surely is drawn into a heated debate

  8. Germany • Pope paid little attention to Luther at first • Thought it was a disagreement between Augustinian & Dominican monks • Luther refused to stop his crusade • Was protected by Frederick III of Saxony • Wanted to reform the church, not create a new one • But in defending his views, Luther gradually came to the point that he had no other choice than to create a new church

  9. Germany • 1520 Luther published his theology of reform • Pope Leo X excommunicated him & Luther burned the bull that excommunicated him • 1521 Diet of Worms • HRE Charles V convened this meeting of leaders of the empire and demanded that Luther recant • Luther refused: “Here I stand, I can do no other.” • Edict of Worms—Luther is outlawed as a heretic • Luther taken to Frederick’s castle where he was protected • Translated the Bible into vernacular • Married a former nun

  10. 3 Key Ideas of Luther’s Theology • How is a person saved? • “Justification by faith alone”-salvation could be achieved through belief in God, rejected good works as the means to achieve salvation • Where does religious authority reside? • The Bible is the sole authority, not the Church, nor the Pope. People could read and interpret the Bible on their own • What is the Church? • Priesthood of all believers who were spiritually equal, not a hierarchical Church structure

  11. Protestant Propaganda

  12. The Spread of the Reformation

  13. Why did the Reformation Spread? • 1. The Emperor was distracted fighting the Ottoman Turks and France • 2. Luther’s stand against the Church emboldened other reformers to break with the Church • 3. Rulers protected reformers • 4. The printing press spread ideas quickly and the Church was unable to stop them

  14. Zwingli-Zurich • Very urban, cosmopolitan setting • Reformer Ulrich Zwingli “Memorialist” view of the Mass • Zwingli also opposed purgatory, clerical celibacy, intercession of the saints, and salvation by works • The death of Zwingli

  15. Calvin-Geneva (French-speaking) • John Calvin’s leadership in Geneva from 1541-1564 • Geneva became the model Protestant training center • Stress on order and rigorous adherence to God’s law • A “Quasi-theocracy” • Very austere religion practiced in Geneva • Self-discipline and the “Protestant Work Ethic”

  16. (1) Background • More of a scholar than Luther • More of a systematic thinker than Luther • Calvin’s **Institutesof the Christian Religion (1536)** • Early legal training • Clear-cut moral directives for living • Relied on Scripture primarily for his ideas

  17. (2) Teaching • Predestination • The Elect • The right of rebellion --English Civil War • Divine calling to all sorts of vocations • The “invisibility” of the True Church • Government serves the Church

  18. Henry VIII-England • Henry VIII’s marriage to Catherine of Aragon • Henry seeks an annulment • Henry creates the Church of England and establishes his own supremacy over it • A “political reformation” only at first • The six wives of Henry VIII

  19. B. England (cont) • The brief reign of Edward VI • The rule of “Bloody” Mary • Return of the Marian exiles to England from Geneva -- “Puritans” • Queen Elizabeth I-The Elizabethen Religious Settlement • The attack of the Spanish Armada in 1588 -- “The Protestant Wind”

  20. Radical Reformers-the Anabaptists • Desire to return to the primitive, first-century Church • High standard of morality valued and pursued • Bitterly persecuted by both Catholics and other Protestants • Ardent missionaries who were harassed for their zeal

  21. (2) Teaching • Free will—all can be saved • Adult, “believer” baptism • Social and economic equality • Pacifism • Separation of Church and State • Stressed role of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer— “inner light” (Quakers) • Simplicity of life and millenarianism—living in the last days

  22. France • King Francis I was initially sympathetic to Luther as long as his ideas stayed in Germany • Protestantism made illegal in France in 1534 • Persecution of the Huguenots—French Protestants • St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre-1572 • King Henry and the Edict of Nantes (1598)

  23. Other Parts of Western Europe • No Protestant inroads into Spain or Italy • Protestantism succeeded only where it was urban and supported initially by the nobility • After 1540, no new Protestant territories outside of the Netherlands • Most powerful European nations were Catholic • Protestants were feuding with each other

  24. The Counter Reformation • Reformation shaped the form and rapidity of the Catholic response • Council of Trent (1545-1563) • The Society of Jesus (“Jesuits”)—1534 --Ignatius Loyola • The Inquisition • The Index • Renewed religious emotionalism --Baroque Art • Religious warfare

  25. Impact of the Reformation • Germany was politically weakened and fragmented • Christian Church was splintered in the West • 100 Years of Religious Warfare • Right of Rebellion introduced by both Jesuits and Calvinists • Pope’s power increased • Furthered societal individualism and secularism • Growing doubt and religious skepticism

  26. Impact of Reformation (cont) • Political stability valued over religious truth • Calvinism boosted the commercial revolution • Witch craze swept Europe in the 1600’s --Between 1561-1670, 3000 people in Germany, 9000 people in Switzerland and 1000 people in England were executed as witches • Possible reasons for this witchcraft craze

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