Protestant & Catholic Reformation
On October 31st 1517, Martin Luther started the beginning of the Protestant Revolution by posting his 95 theses at Wittenberg’s castle. These 95 theses argued on the power and efficacy of indulgences and explained the fundamentals of justification by faith. Thus opened the eyes of the people who had begun to question centuries of Catholic beliefs. Luther and his supporters believed that the Church had been corrupted by power and wealth and therefore it needed to change for the better, however, the Church held strong to their own beliefs. With the constant attacks from the Protestants they fought back in what is known as the Counter-Reformation, also known as the Catholic Reformation. The goal of both reformations was to change the same basic cores of the Church that had been lost. The Protestant Revolution depicts the church as ruled in a totalitarian and authoritarian way by corrupt popes. They viewed the selling of indulgences, which had been initially given to people who went on the crusades, as a commercial exploitation to raise funds for non-religious purposes. The Catholic Church on the other hand, viewed this practice as a way of salvation for the community of Christian believers. Most of the funds raised by the selling of indulgences were used to build St. Peter’s Church. Luther’s followers and other Protestants believed that this was not a religious cause but a way to please the pope’s desire to show his superiority. Luther’s belief in Sola Fide damaged the Catholic Church by proving false their claims that indulgences remove sin and their sale was eventually abolished. Pope Paul III established the Council of Trent to deal with the constant attacks from Protestants. Members of the Church began to see its corruptness and the reason why believers had commenced to doubt hence they began to reform the Church in their own way without submitting to Protestant beliefs. The council consisted of Catholic cardinals who...
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