A history of early catholicism

The Roman Catholics in the world outnumber all other Christians combined.

A history of early catholicism

See Article History Purgatory, the condition, process, or place of purification or temporary punishment in which, according to medieval Christian and Roman Catholic belief, the souls of those who die in a state of grace are made ready for heaven.

Purgatory in world religions The idea of purification or temporary punishment after death has ancient roots and is well attested in early Christian literature.

The conception of purgatory as a geographically situated place is largely the achievement of medieval Christian piety and imagination. Beliefs and practices relating to purgatory profoundly affected Western society in the Middle Ages and beyond.

A history of early catholicism

As the focus of a complex system of suffrages intercessory prayers, massesalms, and fasting on behalf of the deadpenitential practices, and indulgencespurgatory strengthened the bond between the living and the dead, provided motivation for works of social philanthropy as well as for pilgrimage s and Crusade s, and furnished abundant matter for visionary and imaginative literature.

In general, the origins of purgatory may be sought in the worldwide practice of praying for the dead and caring for their needs. Such ministrations presuppose that the dead are in a temporal state between earthly life and their final abode and that they can benefit from the generosity or transferred merit of the living.

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Since these are universal concerns, there are parallels to the Christian conception of purgatory in many religious and cultural traditions. Donations to a monastic communityaltruistic practice of spiritual disciplinesand good deeds are ways of generating merit that may be dedicated to relieving the purgatorial suffering of beings imprisoned in sorrowful rebirths or in transit between lives.

In medieval Chinese Buddhism, the classical Buddhist understanding of rebirth and transfer of merit merged with traditional practices and beliefs concerning the veneration of ancestors and the placation of potentially troublesome ghosts.

The Chinese Buddhist afterworld is perceived as an imperial bureaucracy in which the deceased is subjected to a series of trials whose outcome depends largely upon the offerings made by family members.

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Christian traditions Among Christians, the biblical warrant for purgatory is contested. Supporters of the Roman Catholic belief cite biblical passages in which there are intimations of the three major components of purgatory: These texts yield a consistent notion of purgatory, however, only when viewed from the standpoint of the formal Roman Catholic doctrine, which was defined at the councils of LyonFerrara-Florence —45and Trent —63 after a prolonged period of development by lay Christians and theologians.

Origins of the doctrine Advocates of purgatory find support in numerous scriptural and non-scriptural traditions. The well-attested early Christian practice of prayer for the dead, for example, was encouraged by the episode rejected by Protestants as apocryphal in which Judas Maccabeus Jewish leader of the revolt against the tyrant Antiochus IV Epiphanes makes atonement for the idolatry of his fallen soldiers by providing prayers and a monetary sin offering on their behalf 2 Maccabees The parable of Dives and Lazarus in Luke The noncanonical tradition that on Holy Saturday Christ invaded the realm of the dead and liberated Adam and Eve and the biblical patriarchs lends support to the view that there is a temporary realm of imprisonment after death.

Analogous ideas are found in rabbinic literature, including the Babylonian Talmud. According to Hebrews Gregory of Nyssa c. Augustine — distinguished between the purgatorial fire that burns off stains and the everlasting fire that consumes those who die unrepentant and unreconciled to the church.

Pope Gregory I reigned — elaborated the doctrine still further, treating the purgatorial fire as an extension beyond the grave of the metaphorical fire of redemptive suffering. While commending the practice of offering masses for the sake of suffering souls, he emphasized, as Augustine did, that the question of salvation or damnation is settled at the moment of death.

Only those destined for salvation pass through purgatory. Development of the tradition Visionary literature, such as the 3rd-century Passion of Saints Perpetua and Felicity the account of the martyrdom of St.

Canonical penanceas it evolved in the West, was predicated on the belief that even forgiven sins incur specific punishments and that satisfaction not completed during life must be made after death. As late ashowever, Caesarius of Heisterbacha Cistercian monk and preacher, thought that purgatory could be in several places at once.In The Catholic Church: A History, you'll explore these and other questions as you follow the development of this important institution in 36 informative, fascinating lectures.

With noted historian and Professor William R. Cook as your guide, you'll step into the world of the early church, hear tales of the martyrdom of the first Christian.

Roman Catholicism, Christian church that has been the decisive spiritual force in the history of Western civilization. Along with Eastern Orthodoxy and Protestantism, it is one of the three major branches of Christianity.

The number of Roman Catholics in the world (nearly billion) is greater. The combination 'the Catholic Church' (he katholike ekklesia) is found for the first time in the letter of St. Ignatius to the Smyrnaeans, written about the year History of the Catholic Church QUESTION: What is the history of the Catholic Church?

ANSWER: Catholics believe that our Lord Jesus Christ founded the . Since the expulsion from Heaven of Lucifer and the other fallen angels — an event antecedent to Adam’s creation — the Blessed Mother of God has been the razor by which the good are divided from the bad, the children of God from the children of the devil.

Roman Catholicism is the major religion of nearly every country in Latin benjaminpohle.com can be attributed in large part to the lingering effects of Spanish and Portuguese colonization of the region and the Roman Catholic missions that accompanied those endeavours.

Early Catholicism - Oxford Biblical Studies Online