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The Church of England - Реферат

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Реферат по страноведению на тему:

"The Church of England"

Москва, 2002

The Church of England

Content:

Introduction ......................................................................................3

  1. History of the Church of England

    1. Status of Church in England up to 1530 .............................4

    2. Reformation of Church ...................................................4

Henry VII......................................................................4

Edward VI.....................................................................6

Mary I...........................................................................6

Elizabeth I.....................................................................7

Charles II.......................................................................8

Victoria .........................................................................8

II. The Church of England today...........................................................9

  1. The essence of being an Anglican...............................................9

  2. Organisation of the Church of England ........................................11

    1. Church of England becomes an International Church...........................12

Conclusions.....................................................................................13

Bibliography.....................................................................................14

Introduction

Everything in this life has its own history, especially Religion, as it is a great institution. With the development of history of a particular country, there will always be development of Religion, since the Church is an integral part of State System. Heathenism, Orthodoxy, Judaism etc.. They have been living for centuries. And some of them were changed, penetrated each other or reformed dramatically.

England was not exception.

The English are not a deeply religious race. Hundreds of years ago they decided that Roman Catholicism with its teachings about original sin and the unworthiness of the human race could not really have been meant for them. So they designed a Church of their own – the Church of England.

The English Reformation was a result of the chain of events that eventually altered England and Englishness forever. So much in history is a bastard child of both long-standing, simmering emotion and the opportunistic seizing of a moment. By its nature unexpected, it is also unpredictable, and shaped as much by environment and chance as by its progenitors. The Reformation was no different. It was going on through the ages and reigns.

I. History of the Church of England

1. Status of Church in England up to 1530

Until 1054 there was only one Christian Church - the Catholic Church. Its leadership was centered in five great Patriarchates -- Jerusalem, Antioch, Alexandria and Constantinople in the East and Rome in the West. After the Roman Empire became Christian some bishops increasingly became involved in political matters, and the bishops of Rome in particular began to claim power over the whole Church. This led to a tragic division in the Church, the "Great Schism" of 1054, when it split into the "Orthodox" East and the "Roman Catholic" West.

Not directly involved in that split was the Church in England, which the Bishops of Rome were determined to claim - especially after 1061, when a rival Papacy in Lombardy claimed allegiance from the See of Canterbury. In 1066, the Duke of Normandy (William "the Conqueror"), with the support and formal blessing of Pope Alexander II, invaded England. After seizing the English Crown, William replaced all but one of the English bishops with Norman bishops loyal to Rome. The CHURCH OF ENGLAND was to remain under Papal jurisdiction for nearly 500 years, until the reign of King Henry VIII.

2. Reformation of Church

England in the sixteenth century was a land of contrasts. Much less urban than either Germany or the Netherlands, it nevertheless possessed a thriving international trade centre in London and in Oxford and Cambridge, two universities of outstanding reputation. The universities, in fact, would play a significant role in the early campaigns against Luther. Henry VIII turned to their finest theologians for arguments allowing him to enter the lists against the growing threat of Lutheran heresy. This initiative would earn him from a grateful Pope the coveted title, Defender of the Faith.

The progress of the Reformation in England was closely bound up with Henry's personal affairs. His increasing desperation to secure release from his marriage to Catherine of Aragon forced him to contemplate radical steps that went very much against the grain of his own instinctive theological conservatism.

Henry VIII

It was the only Henry's chance to go outside the boundaries of the orthodoxy. Until this event, Henry had never questioned the Pope's authority or the validity of the Bible passage, it banned the marriage of a brother- and sister-in-law. It was as early as the end of 1529 that Henry first considered a complete dissociation from the Roman church.

Henry forced Wolsey to retire, as his entire foreign policy had collapsed and he was now of no help to the King. In July of 1531, Henry sent Catherine to Ampthill, never to see her again. He took back her royal jewels and gave them to Anne. When Parliament reconvened in January, 1532, Henry ordered that no further funds would be transferred to Rome, but hinted to the Pope that the money would be restored if the annulment was passed.

Meanwhile, most of the bishops had been persuaded that they would not lose any power or income if the English Church were to split from Rome. In March, the Convocation formally announced their readiness to separate: "May it please your Highness to ordain in the present Parliament that the obedience of your Highness and of the people be withdrawn from the See of Rome." On May 15, they printed a pledge to submit all its legislation to a new committee, formed of laymen and clergymen, called the "Reformation Parliament" and Convocation. This is where the Church of England was born.

On January 15, 1533, Henry and Anne, who was four months pregnant, were married. However, the King still did not have his first marriage annulled. He submitted his request for annulment to the new Convocation, led by Thomas Cranmer. On May 23, Cranmer declared Henry and Catherine's marriage to be unlawful and void. Five days later, he pronounced Henry and Anne legally wed. On May 31, 1533, Anne was coronated as Queen of England. Although the King and new Queen rejoiced, the silence from the crowd at the coronation spoke for much of England. Pope Clement excommunicated the King, stating that the new marriage was null, and that any children would be illegitimate. On September 7 Elizabeth was born.

Henry swiftly transformed the English Church by passing various Acts through Parliament. In March of 1534, The Act of Succession declared the marriage to Catherine invalid, and therefore Mary illegitimate. Elizabeth was named heir to the throne unless Anne produced a son. Royal commissioners rode through the countryside, stopping at every house, castle, monastery, and convent to exact oaths of loyalty to the King from every man and woman. Only a few refused; those that did were sent to the Tower of London to be put to death.

On November 11, 1534, theStatute of Supremacy was passed by Parliament. This Act announced that "... the king, our sovereign lord, his heirs and successors, kings of this realm, shall be taken, accepted, and reputed the only supreme head in earth of the Church of England, called Anglicans Ecclesia". And the King "...our said sovereign lord, his heirs and successors, kings of this realm, shall have full power and authority" to do everything "most to the pleasure of Almighty God". It was done to "... increase virtue in Christ's religion, and for the conservation of the peace, unity, and tranquility of this realm" (pp. 97-98, Milton Viorst, The Great Documents of Western Civilization, NY, Barnes and Noble, 1965)

Innovative from the first, the new Church simplified the liturgy, ensured it was in English rather than Latin and set it out in a new Book of Common Prayer which was designed to give the people of England a commonly held pattern of worship, a sense of oneness of Church and people, with the Church sanctifying every side of national life, giving society a Godward purpose and direction. It introduced on Day of Pentecost. It is written in English, emphasizes the people's participation in the eucharist, and requires the Bible to be read from cover to cover. Fast days are retained (supposedly to help fishermen), but saints' days are not.

The political nation was, for the most part, obediently compliant rather than enthusiastic. There is no evidence of any great hostility towards the church and its institutions before the Reformation; on the contrary, both the English episcopate and parish clergy seem to have been, by the standards of other European lands, both well-trained and living without scandal. Cardinal Wolsey, who fathered an illegitimate son, was very much the exception. On the other hand, few were prepared to defy the King to defend the threatened institutions of the old church. Many benefited from the windfall of church property that followed the confiscation of monastic lands.

Edward VI

During Edward's reign (Henry's son), the Church of England became more explicitly Protestant - Edward himself was fiercely so. The Book of Common Prayer was introduced in 1549, aspects of Roman Catholic practices (including statues and stained glass) were eradicated and the marriage of clergy allowed. The imposition of the Prayer Book (which replaced Latin services with English) led to rebellions in Cornwall and Devon.

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