The reformation

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  1. The Protestant Reformation

    1. Erasmus and Christian Humanism

      1. The Protestant Reformation is the name given to the religious reform movement

that divided the Western Church into Catholic and Protestant groups.

      1. The new classical learning that was part of the Italian Renaissance humanism

spread to northern Europe.

      1. Christian humanists believed in the ability of human beings to reason and

improve themselves. They thought that if people read the basic works of

Christianity, they would become more pious. This inner piety would bring

about reform of the Church and society.

      1. Erasmus believed that Christianity should show people how to live good

lives on a daily basis rather than provide a system of beliefs that people

have to practice to be saved. Wrote In Praise of Folly.

      1. These beliefs opened the way to the Protestant Reformation.

    1. Religion on the Eve of the Reformation

      1. The so-called Renaissance popes (1450-1520) were more concerned with Italian

politics involved with running the Papal States than with spiritual matters.

      1. Many church officials used their Church offices to advance their careers and

their wealth.

      1. Many ordinary parish priests were unable to offer people advice and

instruction in salvation.

      1. People sought indulgences the collection of relics.

    1. Martin Luther

      1. Martin Luther was a monk and a professor at the University of Wittenberg, in

Germany, where he lectured on the Bible.

      1. Through his study of the Bible, Luther came to believe that humans were not

saved through their good works but through their faith in God. This belief

became the chief teaching of the Protestant Reformation.

      1. The Ninety-Five Theses

        1. Luther was particularly offended at Johann Tetzel’s selling of indulgences.

        2. Luther sent the 95 Theses to his Church superiors. They were printed

and spread to all parts of Germany. Pope Leo X did not take this issue


      1. A Break with the Church

        1. Luther called for the German princes to overthrow the papacy in Germany

and establish a reformed German church.

        1. The Church excommunicated Luther in January 1521.

        2. The newly elected Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V, declared Luther

an outlaw. His works were to be burned and Luther captured and

delivered to the Emperor.

        1. Luther’s ruler, Elector Frederick of Saxony, sent Luther into hiding

and protected him.

    1. Politics in the German Reformation

      1. Charles V, the Holy Roman Emperor, wanted to keep his empire united under his

dynasty, the Hapsburgs, and to keep the Catholic Church the one church in that


      1. Charles was fighting with France over disputed territories on his western frontier.

      2. The Ottoman Turks were advancing on the eastern part of his empire.

      3. Pope Clement VII sided with the French king for political reasons.

      4. The several hundred German states owed loyalty to the emperor. Germany’s

development in the Middle Ages had enabled these state to free themselves

from the emperor’s authority. Many individual rulers of the German states

supported Luther as a way to assert their own local authority over the authority

of the empire and Charles V.

      1. An end to religious warfare in Germany came in 1555 with the Peace of

Augsburg. This agreement gave German states freedom to choose between

Catholicism and Lutheranism.

  1. The Spread of Protestantism and the Catholic Response

    1. Zwinglian Reformation

      1. Zurich, Switzerland

      2. lost war with Catholic states in Switzerland

    2. Calvin and Calvinism

      1. had to flee Catholic France to Switzerland when he converted to Protestantism

      2. faith alone to achieve salvation

      3. predestination

      4. Geneva, Switzerland; then France, Netherlands, and Scotland

    3. The Reformation in England

      1. roots in politics, not in religion

      2. When the pope refused to annul King Henry VIII’s marriage to his first wife

because she had not given him a male heir, he got the Archbishop of

Canterbury to annul the marriage.

3. Henry married Anne Boleyn who gave birth to a girl who would be come

Queen Elizabeth I.

  1. The Act of Supremacy declared that the King was head of the new Church of

England. This position gave the king control over religious doctrine, clerical

appointments, and discipline. Sir Thomas More, a Christian humanist and

a devout Catholic, opposed the king’s action and was beheaded.

5. Henry used his new powers to dissolve the monasteries and sell their land and

possessions to wealthy landowners and merchants. The king received a great

boost to his treasury and a group of supporters who now had a stake in the

new order.

  1. Edward VI, son of Jane Seymour, Henry’s third wife

  2. Mary, daughter of Catherine of Aragon, Henry’s first wife, Bloody Mary

  3. Elizabeth, daughter of Anne Boleyn, Henry’s second wife, Elizabethan Age

    1. The Anabaptists

      1. The true Christian church was voluntary community of adult believers who had

undergone spiritual rebirth and had then been baptized.

      1. Each Anabaptist church chose its own minister, or spiritual leader.

      2. Anabaptists believed in the complete separation of church and state to the

point where they would not hold political office or bear arms.

    1. Effects of the role of Women

      1. Protestants abolished both monasticism and the requirement of celibacy for the


      1. Family life was the only destiny for most Protestant women—nothing had changed.

    1. The Catholic Reformation

      1. Jesuit missionaries were very successful in restoring Catholicism to parts of

Germany and eastern Europe and spreading it to other parts of the world. The

Jesuits used education to spread their message.

      1. Pope Paul III appointed a Reform Commission in 1537. The commission

blamed the Church’s problems on the corrupt policies of the popes.

      1. The Council of Trent reaffirmed traditional Catholic teaching in opposition to

Protestant beliefs.

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