Senior Theology Brief Look Back at Church History September 2014

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  • Senior TheologyBrief Look Back at Church HistorySeptember 2014

  • The Early ChurchPre Christian RomeLaw/Justice necessary for orderly societyJustice for each in the social orderLandowners, artisans, freed slaves, slaves, lowestNot necessary to move between orders or aid other ordersChristianity introduces concept of Charity/caritas

  • The Early ChurchCharity/CaritasAll are equalexamples????A radical ideaChurch still incorporated some idea of law from Rome, especially when Christianity became legal

  • The Early ChurchChristianity becomes legal religion of all; takes root andSpreads during the Pax RomanaBasic organization: bishop of Rome, plus other bishopsfrom the Apostles; shepherd, sanctify & teach.Assisted by priests & deaconsBishop of Rome is most importantwhy?

  • The Early ChurchSpread of ChristianityConstantines Edict of Milanhe sees Christianity as unifying force for the EmpireHelps evangelizationChurch adopts Roman methods of administration & Justinian Code of Lawa reform of civil law that reflected Christian values. Includes protection for women & children but still reflects customs of the timerepressive measures against non-Christians

  • The Early ChurchCollapse of Rome in 476.Pope & bishops looked to as civic as well as religious leaders.Gregory the Great (590-604)Monasticismstrong force for Christianitys growthSt. Antony of Egyptfather of monasticismSt. Benedictfather of western monasticism; Rule of St. Benedict becomes model for future monasteriesMonasteries become centers of learning & evangelizationstability in unstable times

  • The Early ChurchPatristic AgeFathers of the ChurchFranksClovis, Pepin, then Charlemagne andHoly Roman Empire: an alliance between Church and stateRise of IslamMuslim invasion, loss of the Eastern Church in Syria, Palestine, North Africa & Spain; isolates the Western ChurchBeginnings of split between Pope, emperor & Patriarch of Constantinople

  • The Middle AgesEarlyThe Dark Agesbreakup of Holy Roman Empire; invasions by Norsemen & VikingsRise of FeudalismSecular control over the Church with abuses likeLay investiture, simonyReforms under various popes to free papacy from secular control

  • The Middle AgesCouncilsseeking spiritual reform; clear definitions of Catholic doctrineCouncils throughout all time periods1054Eastern Schismresult of centuries of differences between Western and Eastern Churchlanguage, culture, theology, politicsCrusadesattempt to open Holy Land to Christian pilgrimsMixed resultsviolence against the innocent but opened the West to trade, new ideas, end of feudalism

  • The Middle AgesMendicant (begging) orders helped call the Church back to Gospel Values & simplicityCathedrals & universities; scholastic theologygreat thinkersSt. Thomas AquinasThe Peace of God (spared women, clergy, children & peasants from attack) and the Truce of God (limited days to fight in a yearonly 80; none Wed evening till Monday morning; religious holidays)Just-War Theoryroots in St. Augustine & Thomas AquinasHowever, later popes try to exert idea of pope is sovereign over kings

  • Schism, Reform, RenewalProtestant Reformation Eventually, reforms followed

  • The New WorldPost-Reformation Churchmissionary activity to the New World and the East18th CAn age of revolutionEnlightenmentRationalismhumans could achieve truth without divine revelationRevolution in Americanot hostile to religionRevolution in Francehostile to religionstamped out Catholicism

  • The Modern Era19th CLiberalismRight to vote, democracy, equality of all citizensBut many liberals anti-religious, violent; hoped to destroy ChurchIndustrial RevolutionMarxist communismmust be a violent struggle to bring justice; religion stands in way of that strugglean opiate1891Pope Leo XIIIRerum NovarumOn the Condition of WorkersLandmark social-justice encyclicalRight to private propertycapitalism is ok, with limitsWorkers rights to a fair wage & unionizationBut, state intervention to defend workers.Family & religion important to build just society

  • The Modern Eraan exampleMarie-Eugenie Milleret/France, early 1800s; family not interested in religion, but passionate about liberty and justiceFall of Napoleon; rise of industrialismEarly years, did not connect Catholicism (name only in France) to justice concernsDistraught over plight of industrialized workers.God willed to establish a social order where no man would have to suffer from the oppression of others

  • Marie-Eugenie Milleret, cont.Believed education a key to changing societythere was great neglect in education, especially among workers & womenGod willed to establish a social order where no man would have to suffer from the oppression of othersFounded an order of sistersReligious of the Assumptionto teach and to perform works of mercy/charityCompare Millerets approach to injustice & the approach of marxism.

  • The Church In Modern TimesA change from the pastcastle & moat; above, in a sense, what happens in society.The Church must be in the world, but not of the worldGo forth from Liturgy to bring the kingdom of God/His transforming love to all people!Many persons of the Church of 19th C were distilling these ideasMilleret as an examplebut reaches a high point & beginning with Rerum Novarumtry to change social problemsFrederic Ozanamfounded the St. Vincent de Paul Society, a worldwide charity organization for the poor.

  • The Church TodayCatholic Social TeachingTo examine & interpret historical & current events in light of Gospel teachings of Jesus Christ with revelation of the Holy SpiritCST must respond to the signs of the times

  • Rerum NovarumRadical! Creates a great stir!Challenges society to become more like the Kingdom of God byCriticizing capitalism & marxism andAdvocating for the dignity of workersInfluenced governments to protect workers rights

  • Rerum Novarum, cont.More importantly,Sets the precedent for Church to speak out on social mattersChallenges Christians to look for the roots of social injusticelook for causes of problems like povertyChange the way society is set up to eliminate the problems!These two things cannot be separated: Individual moral choices affect society & society affects individual moral choices

  • Review pages 47-50, papal and conciliar documents on CST. Which one or ones interest you the most? Why?Now review the pastoral letters of the U.S. bishops. Which one or ones interest you the most? Why?