There is a myth that since the time of the con of the Roman Empire to Christianity in 313 A.D. Reformation that the Catholic Church lived in relative peace. policy position paper example is false; the Church was constantly under attack. Heresies, Islam, and other less organized pagans always had the Church busy fighting on the side of Truth. From 300 A.D. to 600 A.D., the Church was affected with the heresy of Arianism. The heresy caused many men and many clergy to be led astray. After the Church’s battle with Arianism, Mohammed and his new religion, Islam, rose to power and overwhelmed most of the Orient. Islam and Christianity were at war with each other since Islam’s creation up until the Reformation. Between battles with Islam, pagans from Scandinavia and Mongols from Asia tried to battle Christian Europe, but they were less organized and easily defeated. Christian unity was incredibly strong for the first twelve hundred years of its existence because the Christians were always defending their faith against an outside opponent.
There was not time for any internal dissention, everyone got along because they had an attitude of “we” verse “them.” Since a Christian was a Christian, it didn’t matter their theology or how they lived their life, or how the Church lead its people. As long as a person was not Islamic or from another outside group, everyone got along. We Can Write Custom Essays on The Reformation for You! But, after the twelfth century, the pressure from outside forces that Christianity was fighting against diminished. With no need for strong Christian identity, heresy and dissention began to pop up throughout Christendom. For example, the Albigensian movement, they had a belief in a doctrine of a dual godhead. There was a good god and an evil god. This heresy spread through much of southern France before it was extinguished. After the extinguishing of the Albigensian heresy, there was a time of piece for about eighty years.
From 1220 A.D. to 1300 A.D. Europe lived in a full Catholic society. The whole of Europe was under one belief and one spiritual head. Heresy and revolt started to creep in to European society starting in the fourteenth century. Small spiritual revolts started appearing for the first time. The most notable movements were the movement by Wycliffe and at the very end of the century the Hussite movement. Wycliffe who died in 1384 is considered the “morning star” by some Protestant historians because to some people his movement is the beginning of the Reformation. His movement though strong, was short and only affected a small part of Europe. John Huss and the Hussites of Bohemia were another strong spiritual movement that started about almost exactly one hundred years before Martin Luther. The Hussite movement was also a strong movement, but was very nationalistic. The Bohemians joined Huss not out of theological beliefs, but out of national pride.
The ground was prepared for a catastrophe by the end of the fourteenth century, but still no fatal course made the Reformation inevitable (Belloc 14). By the time of the start of the Reformation the doctrinal novelties of Wycliffe, Huss, and others had already faded away. Many generations had already passed by before Luther’s first protest. Though there were spiritual revolts in the fourteenth century, there were many Catholic spiritual triumphs going on at the same time. There was the rise of the great monastic Orders of St. Francis and St. Dominic and the philosophy and theology of St. Thomas. One of the most detrimental causes of the weakening of the papacy was the unnatural migration to Avignon. For centuries, Europe was use to the conflict between the papacy and the empire. The emperor was the head of lay power and the pope was the head of spiritual power. The papacy eventually won the battle, but at high costs. The papacy heavily taxed Europe, especially England (Belloc 16). With the empire fallen, the papacy had full control over the temporal and spiritual fields. Data has been generated with Essay Freelance Writers!