Doctor of the Church
Doctor of the Church is a title given by the Catholic Church to saints recognized as having made significant contribution to theology or doctrine through their research, study, or writing. Some other churches have similar categories with various names. In the Western church four outstanding "Fathers of the Church" attained this honour in the early Middle Ages: Saint Gregory the Great, Saint Ambrose, Saint Augustine, Saint Jerome; the "four Doctors" became a commonplace notion among Scholastics theologians, a decree of Boniface VIII ordering their feasts to be kept as doubles throughout the Latin Church is contained in his sixth book of Decretals. In the Eastern Church three Doctors were pre-eminent: Saint John Chrysostom, Saint Basil the Great, Gregory of Nazianzus; the feasts of these three saints were made obligatory throughout the Eastern Empire by Leo VI the Wise. A common feast was instituted in their honour on 30 January, called "the feast of the three Hierarchs". In the Menaea for that day it is related that the three Doctors appeared in a dream to John Mauropous, Bishop of Euchaita, commanded him to institute a festival in their honour, in order to put a stop to the rivalries of their votaries and panegyrists.
This was under Alexius Comnenus. But sermons for the feast are attributed in manuscripts to Cosmas Vestitor, who flourished in the tenth century; the three are as common in Eastern art. Durandus remarks. In the West analogy led to the veneration of four Eastern Doctors, Saint Athanasius being added to the three hierarchs; the details of the title, Doctor of the Church, vary from one autonomous ritual church to another. In the Latin Church, the four Latin Doctors "had long been recognized" in the liturgy when the four Great Doctors of the Eastern Church, John Chrysostom, Basil the Great, Gregory of Nazianzus, Athanasius of Alexandria were recognized in 1568 by Pope St. Pius V. To these names others have subsequently been added with liturgical effects; the requisite conditions are enumerated as three: eminens doctrina, insignis vitae sanctitas, Ecclesiae declaratio. Benedict XIV explains the third as a declaration by a general council, but though general councils have acclaimed the writings of certain Doctors, no council has conferred the title of Doctor of the Church.
The procedure involved extending to the universal Church the use of the Divine Office and Mass of the saint in which the title of doctor is applied to him. The decree is issued by the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints and approved by the pope, after a careful examination, if necessary, of the saint's writings, it is not in any way an ex cathedra decision, nor does it amount to a declaration that no error is to be found in the teaching of the Doctor. It is, well known that the greatest of them are not wholly immune from error. No martyr is in the list, since the Office and the Mass were for Confessors. Hence, as Benedict XIV points out, Saint Ignatius of Antioch, Saint Irenaeus of Lyons, Saint Cyprian of Carthage are not called Doctors of the Church; the Doctors' works vary in subject and form. Some, such as Pope Gregory the Great and St Ambrose of Milan, were prominent writers of letters and short treatises. Saints Catherine of Siena and John of the Cross wrote mystical theology. Saints Augustine of Hippo and Bellarmine defended the Church against heresy.
Bede wrote theological treatises. Systematic theologians include the Scholastic philosophers Saint Anselm of Canterbury, Saint Albert the Great, Saint Thomas Aquinas; until 1970, no woman had been named a doctor in the church, but since four additions to the list have been women: Saints Teresa of Ávila and Catherine of Siena by Pope Paul VI. Saints Teresa and Therese were both Discalced Carmelites, St. Catherine was a lay Dominican, Hildegard was a Benedictine. Traditionally, in the Liturgy, the Office of Doctors was distinguished from that of Confessors by two changes: the Gospel reading Vos estis sal terrae, Matthew 5:13–19, the eighth Respond at Matins, from Ecclesiasticus 15:5, In medio Ecclesiae aperuit os ejus, * Et implevit eum Deus spiritu sapientiae et intellectus. * Jucunditatem et exsultationem thesaurizavit super eum. The Nicene Creed was recited at Mass, not said except on Sundays and the highest-ranking feast days; the 1962 revisions to the Missal dropped the Creed from feasts of Doctors and abolished the title and the Common of Confessors, instituting a distinct Common of Doctors.
As of 2015, the Catholic Church has named 36 Doctors of the Church. Of these, the 17 who died before the Great Schism of 1054 are held in high esteem by the Eastern Orthodox Church, although it does not use the formal title "Doctor of the Church" in the same way that Catholics do. Among these 36 are 27 from the West and 9 from the East. More Doctors lived during the 4th century than any other.
The Summa Theologiae is the best-known work of Thomas Aquinas. Although unfinished, the Summa is "one of the classics of the history of philosophy and one of the most influential works of Western literature." It is intended as an instructional guide for theology students, including seminarians and the literate laity. It is a compendium of all of the main theological teachings of the Catholic Church, it presents the reasoning for all points of Christian theology in the West. The Summa's topics follow a cycle: God; the Summa is Aquinas' "most perfect work, the fruit of his mature years, in which the thought of his whole life is condensed." Among non-scholars, the Summa is most famous for its five arguments for the existence of God, which are known as the "five ways". The five ways, occupy only one of the Summa's 3,125 articles. Throughout the Summa, Aquinas cites Christian, Muslim and Pagan sources including but not limited to Christian Sacred Scripture, Augustine of Hippo, Averroes, Al-Ghazali, John of Damascus, Paul the Apostle, Dionysius the Areopagite, Anselm, Plato and Eriugena.
The Summa is a more structured and expanded version of Aquinas's earlier Summa contra Gentiles. These works were written for different purposes, the Summa Theologiae to explain the Christian faith to beginning theology students, the Summa contra Gentiles to explain the Christian faith and defend it in hostile situations, with arguments adapted to the intended circumstances of its use, each article refuting a certain belief or a specific heresy. Aquinas conceived the Summa as a work suited to beginning students: "Because a doctor of catholic truth ought not only to teach the proficient, but to him pertains to instruct beginners; as the Apostle says in 1 Corinthians 3: 1–2, as to infants in Christ, I gave you milk to drink, not meat, our proposed intention in this work is to convey those things that pertain to the Christian religion, in a way, fitting to the instruction of beginners."It was while teaching at the Santa Sabina studium provinciale, the forerunner of the Santa Maria sopra Minerva studium generale and College of Saint Thomas, which in the 20th century would become the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas, that Aquinas began to compose the Summa.
He completed the Prima Pars in its entirety and circulated it in Italy before departing to take up his second regency as professor at the University of Paris. Not only has the Summa Theologiae been one of the main intellectual inspirations for Thomistic philosophy, but it had such a great influence on Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy, that Dante's epic poem has been called "the Summa in verse." Today, both in Western and Eastern Catholic Churches and the mainstream original Protestant denominations, it is common for the Summa Theologiae to be required or urged reading, in whole or in part, for all those seeking ordination to the diaconate or priesthood, or to professed male or female religious life, or for laypersons studying philosophy and theology at the collegiate level. The Summa is structured into three Parts which are subdivided into 614 Questions or "QQ". Questions, in turn, are subdivided into 3,125 Articles. "Questions" are specific topics of discussion, while their articles are more specific questions, facets of the parent question.
For example, Part I, Question 2, "The Existence of God" is divided into three articles: "Whether the existence of God is self-evident?", "Whether it can be demonstrated that God exists?", "Whether God exists?" Additionally, questions on a broader theme are grouped into Treatises, though the category of treatise is reported differently, depending on the source. The Summa's three parts have a few other major subdivisions. First Part: in Latin, Prima Pars. God's nature. Second Part, subdivided into two sub-parts:First part of the Second Part: Prima Secundae, or Part I-II. General principles of morality. Second part of the Second Part: Secunda Secundae, or Part II-II. Morality in particular, including individual virtues and vices. Third Part: Tertia Pars; the person and work of Christ, the way of man to God. Aquinas left this part unfinished. Supplement; the third part proper is attended by a posthumous supplement which concludes the third part and the Summa, treating of Christian eschatology, or "the last things".
Appendix I and II. Additionally, there are two small appendices which discuss the subject of purgatory; the Summa has a standard format for each article, which can be explained by taking another article as an example: "Whether Christ should have led a life of poverty in this world?", a facet of the larger question "Of Christ's Manner of Life." A series of objections to the conclusion are given. Note that this said conclusion can be extracted by setting the introduction to the first objection into the negative, thus, St. Thomas begins here "It would seem that Christ should not have led a life of poverty in this world", his thesis in the end is "Christ should have led
Pope Benedict XVI
Pope Benedict XVI is a senior prelate of the Catholic Church who served as its head and sovereign of the Vatican City State from 2005 until his resignation in 2013. Benedict's election as pope occurred in the 2005 papal conclave that followed the death of Pope John Paul II. Benedict chose to be known by the title "Pope Emeritus" upon his resignation. Ordained as a priest in 1951 in his native Bavaria, Ratzinger had established himself as a regarded university theologian by the late 1950s and was appointed a full professor in 1958. After a long career as an academic and professor of theology at several German universities, he was appointed Archbishop of Munich and Freising and Cardinal by Pope Paul VI in 1977, an unusual promotion for someone with little pastoral experience. In 1981, he was appointed Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, one of the most important dicasteries of the Roman Curia. From 2002 until his election as pope, he was Dean of the College of Cardinals.
Prior to becoming Pope, he was "a major figure on the Vatican stage for a quarter of a century". He has lived in Rome since 1981, his prolific writings defend traditional Catholic doctrine and values. He was a liberal theologian, but adopted conservative views after 1968. During his papacy, Benedict XVI advocated a return to fundamental Christian values to counter the increased secularisation of many Western countries, he views relativism's denial of objective truth, the denial of moral truths in particular, as the central problem of the 21st century. He taught the importance of both an understanding of God's redemptive love. Pope Benedict revived a number of traditions, including elevating the Tridentine Mass to a more prominent position, he strengthened the relationship between the Catholic Church and art, promoted the use of Latin, reintroduced traditional papal garments, for which reason he was called "the pope of aesthetics". He has been described as "the main intellectual force in the Church" since the mid-1980s.
On 11 February 2013, Benedict unexpectedly announced his resignation in a speech in Latin before the cardinals, citing a "lack of strength of mind and body" due to his advanced age. His resignation became effective on 28 February 2013, he is the first pope to resign since Gregory XII in 1415, the first to do so on his own initiative since Celestine V in 1294. As pope emeritus, Benedict retains the style of His Holiness, the title of pope, continues to dress in the papal colour of white, he was succeeded by Pope Francis on 13 March 2013, he moved into the newly renovated monastery Mater Ecclesiae for his retirement on 2 May 2013. In his retirement, Benedict XVI has made occasional public appearances alongside Pope Francis. Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger was born on 16 April, Holy Saturday, 1927, at Schulstraße 11, at 8:30 in the morning in his parents' home in Marktl, Germany, he was baptised the same day. He is the third and youngest child of Joseph Ratzinger, Sr. a police officer, Maria Ratzinger.
His mother's family was from South Tyrol. Pope Benedict's elder brother, Georg Ratzinger, is a Catholic priest and is the former director of the Regensburger Domspatzen choir, his sister, Maria Ratzinger, who never married, managed Cardinal Ratzinger's household until her death in 1991. At the age of five, Ratzinger was in a group of children who welcomed the visiting Cardinal Archbishop of Munich, Michael von Faulhaber, with flowers. Struck by the cardinal's distinctive garb, he announced that day that he wanted to be a cardinal, he attended the elementary school in Aschau am Inn, renamed in his honour in 2009. Ratzinger's family his father, bitterly resented the Nazis, his father's opposition to Nazism resulted in demotions and harassment of the family. Following his 14th birthday in 1941, Ratzinger was conscripted into the Hitler Youth—as membership was required by law for all 14-year-old German boys after March 1939—but was an unenthusiastic member who refused to attend meetings, according to his brother.
In 1941, one of Ratzinger's cousins, a 14-year-old boy with Down syndrome, was taken away by the Nazi regime and murdered during the Action T4 campaign of Nazi eugenics. In 1943, while still in seminary, he was drafted into the German anti-aircraft corps as Luftwaffenhelfer. Ratzinger trained in the German infantry; as the Allied front drew closer to his post in 1945, he deserted back to his family's home in Traunstein after his unit had ceased to exist, just as American troops established a headquarters in the Ratzinger household. As a German soldier, he was interned in a prisoner of war camp, but released a few months at the end of the war in May 1945. Ratzinger and his brother Georg entered Saint Michael Seminary in Traunstein in November 1945 studying at the Ducal Georgianum of the Ludwig-Maximilian University in Munich, they were both ordained in Freising on 29 June 1951 by Cardinal Michael von Faulhaber of Munich. Ratzinger recalled: "at the moment the elderly Archbishop laid his hands on me, a little bird – a lark – flew up from the altar in the high cathedral and trilled a little joyful song."Ratzinger's 1953 dissertation was on St. Augustine and was titled The People and the House of God in Augustine's Doctrine of the Church.
His habilitation was on Bonaven
Thomism is the philosophical school that arose as a legacy of the work and thought of Thomas Aquinas, philosopher and Doctor of the Church. In philosophy, Aquinas' disputed questions and commentaries on Aristotle are his most well-known works. In theology, his Summa Theologica is one of the most influential documents in medieval theology and continues to be the central point of reference for the philosophy and theology of the Catholic Church. In the 1914 encyclical Doctoris Angelici Pope Pius X cautioned that the teachings of the Church cannot be understood without the basic philosophical underpinnings of Aquinas' major theses: The capital theses in the philosophy of St. Thomas are not to be placed in the category of opinions capable of being debated one way or another, but are to be considered as the foundations upon which the whole science of natural and divine things is based; the Second Vatican Council described Aquinas' system as the "Perennial Philosophy". Thomas Aquinas believed, his doctrines draw from Greek and Jewish, philosophers.
He was a realist. He followed Aristotelian terminology and metaphysics, wrote comprehensive commentaries on Aristotle affirming Aristotle's views with independent arguments. Aquinas respectfully referred to Aristotle as "the Philosopher", he adhered to some neoplatonic principles, for example that "it is true that there is first something, being and good, which we call God... everything can be called good and a being, inasmuch as it participates in it by way of a certain assimilation..." With the decree Postquam sanctissimus of 27 July 1914, Pope Pius X declared that 24 theses formulated by "teachers from various institutions... contain the principles and more important thoughts" of Aquinas. Principal contributors to the Church's official statement of the "24 Theses" of Thomism include Dominican philosopher and theologian Edouard Hugon of the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas and Jesuit philosopher theologian Guido Mattiussi of the Pontifical Gregorian University. Potency and Act divide being in such a way that whatever is, is either pure act, or of necessity it is composed of potency and act as primary and intrinsic principles.
Since act is perfection, it is not limited except through a potency which itself is a capacity for perfection. Hence in any order in which an act is pure act, it will only exist, in that order, as a unique and unlimited act, but whenever it is finite and manifold, it has entered into a true composition with potency. The one God and simple, alone subsists in absolute being. All other things that participate in being have a nature. A thing is called a being because of "esse". God and creature are not called beings univocally, nor wholly equivocally, but analogically, by an analogy both of attribution and of proportionality. In every creature there is a real composition of the subsisting subject and of added secondary forms, i.e. accidental forms. Such composition cannot be understood unless being is received in an essence distinct from it. Besides the absolute accidents there is the relative accident, relation. Although by reason of its own character relation does not signify anything inhering in another, it often has a cause in things, hence a real entity distinct from the subject.
A spiritual creature is wholly simple in its essence. Yet there is still a twofold composition in the spiritual creature, that of the essence with being, that of the substance with accidents. However, the corporeal creature is composed of act and potency in its essence; these act and potency in the order of essence are designated by the names form and matter respectively. Neither the matter nor the form have being of themselves, nor are they produced or corrupted of themselves, nor are they included in any category otherwise than reductively, as substantial principles. Although extension in quantitative parts follows upon a corporeal nature it is not the same for a body to be a substance and for it to be quantified. For of itself substance is indivisible, not indeed as a point is indivisible, but as that which falls outside the order of dimensions is indivisible, but quantity, which gives the substance extension differs from the substance and is an accident. The principle of individuation, i.e. of numerical distinction of one individual from another with the same specific nature, is matter designated by quantity.
Thus in pure spirits there cannot be more than one individual in the same specific nature. By virtue of a body's quantity itself, the body is circumscriptively in a place, in one place alone circumscriptively, no matter what power might be brought to bear. Bodies are divided into two groups. In the case of the living things, in order that there be in the same subject an moving part and an moved part, the substantial form, designated by the name soul, requires an organic disposition, i.e. heterogeneous parts. Souls in the vegetative and sensitive orders cannot subsist of themselves, nor are they produced of themselves. Rather, they are no more than principles whereb
René Descartes was a French philosopher and scientist. A native of the Kingdom of France, he spent about 20 years of his life in the Dutch Republic after serving for a while in the Dutch States Army of Maurice of Nassau, Prince of Orange and the Stadtholder of the United Provinces, he is considered one of the most notable intellectual figures of the Dutch Golden Age. Descartes' Meditations on First Philosophy continues to be a standard text at most university philosophy departments. Descartes' influence in mathematics is apparent, he is credited as the father of analytical geometry, the bridge between algebra and geometry, used in the discovery of infinitesimal calculus and analysis. Descartes was one of the key figures in the Scientific Revolution. Descartes refused to accept the authority of previous philosophers, he set his views apart from those of his predecessors. In the opening section of the Passions of the Soul, an early modern treatise on emotions, Descartes goes so far as to assert that he will write on this topic "as if no one had written on these matters before".
His best known philosophical statement is "I think, therefore I am", found in Discourse on the Method and Principles of Philosophy. Many elements of his philosophy have precedents in late Aristotelianism, the revived Stoicism of the 16th century, or in earlier philosophers like Augustine. In his natural philosophy, he differed from the schools on two major points: first, he rejected the splitting of corporeal substance into matter and form. In his theology, he insists on the absolute freedom of God's act of creation. Descartes laid the foundation for 17th-century continental rationalism advocated by Spinoza and Leibniz, was opposed by the empiricist school of thought consisting of Hobbes, Locke and Hume. Leibniz and Descartes were all well-versed in mathematics as well as philosophy, Descartes and Leibniz contributed to science as well. René Descartes was born in La Haye en Touraine, France, on 31 March 1596, his mother, Jeanne Brochard, died soon after giving birth to him, so he was not expected to survive.
Descartes' father, was a member of the Parlement of Brittany at Rennes. René lived with his great-uncle. Although the Descartes family was Roman Catholic, the Poitou region was controlled by the Protestant Huguenots. In 1607, late because of his fragile health, he entered the Jesuit Collège Royal Henry-Le-Grand at La Flèche, where he was introduced to mathematics and physics, including Galileo's work. After graduation in 1614, he studied for two years at the University of Poitiers, earning a Baccalauréat and Licence in canon and civil law in 1616, in accordance with his father's wishes that he should become a lawyer. From there he moved to Paris. In Discourse on the Method, Descartes recalls, I abandoned the study of letters. Resolving to seek no knowledge other than that of which could be found in myself or else in the great book of the world, I spent the rest of my youth traveling, visiting courts and armies, mixing with people of diverse temperaments and ranks, gathering various experiences, testing myself in the situations which fortune offered me, at all times reflecting upon whatever came my way so as to derive some profit from it.
Given his ambition to become a professional military officer, in 1618, Descartes joined, as a mercenary, the Protestant Dutch States Army in Breda under the command of Maurice of Nassau, undertook a formal study of military engineering, as established by Simon Stevin. Descartes, received much encouragement in Breda to advance his knowledge of mathematics. In this way, he became acquainted with Isaac Beeckman, the principal of a Dordrecht school, for whom he wrote the Compendium of Music. Together they worked on free fall, conic section, fluid statics. Both believed that it was necessary to create a method that linked mathematics and physics. While in the service of the Catholic Duke Maximilian of Bavaria since 1619, Descartes was present at the Battle of the White Mountain outside Prague, in November 1620. According to Adrien Baillet, on the night of 10–11 November 1619, while stationed in Neuburg an der Donau, Descartes shut himself in a room with an "oven" to escape the cold. While within, he had three dreams and believed that a divine spirit revealed to him a new philosophy.
However, it is that what Descartes considered to be his second dream was an episode of exploding head syndrome. Upon exiting, he had formulated analytical geometry and the idea of applying the mathematical method to philosophy, he concluded from these visions that the pursuit of science would prove to be, for him, the pursuit of true wisdom and a central part of his life's work. Descartes saw clearly that all truths were linked with one another so that finding a fundamental truth and proceeding with logic would open the way to all science. Descartes discovered this basic truth quite soon: his famous "I think, therefore I am". In 1620 Descartes left the army, he visited Basilica della Santa Casa in Loreto visited various countries before returning to France, during the next few years spent time in Paris. It was there that he compo
Council of Trent
The Council of Trent, held between 1545 and 1563 in Trent, was the 19th ecumenical council of the Catholic Church. Prompted by the Protestant Reformation, it has been described as the embodiment of the Counter-Reformation; the Council issued condemnations of what it defined to be heresies committed by proponents of Protestantism, issued key statements and clarifications of the Church's doctrine and teachings, including scripture, the Biblical canon, sacred tradition, original sin, salvation, the sacraments, the Mass, the veneration of saints. The Council met for twenty-five sessions between 13 December 1545 and 4 December 1563. Pope Paul III, who convoked the Council, oversaw the first eight sessions, while the twelfth to sixteenth sessions were overseen by Pope Julius III and the seventeenth to twenty-fifth sessions by Pope Pius IV; the consequences of the Council were significant in regards to the Church's liturgy and practices. During its deliberations, the Council made the Vulgate the official example of the Biblical canon and commissioned the creation of a standard version, although this was not achieved until the 1590s.
In 1565, a year after the Council finished its work, Pius IV issued the Tridentine Creed and his successor Pius V issued the Roman Catechism and revisions of the Breviary and Missal in 1566, 1568 and 1570. These, in turn, led to the codification of the Tridentine Mass, which remained the Church's primary form of the Mass for the next four hundred years. More than three hundred years passed until the next ecumenical council, the First Vatican Council, was convened in 1869. On 15 March 1517, the Fifth Council of the Lateran closed its activities with a number of reform proposals but not on the major problems that confronted the Church in Germany and other parts of Europe. A few months on 31 October 1517, Martin Luther issued his 95 Theses in Wittenberg. Luther's position on ecumenical councils shifted over time, but in 1520 he appealed to the German princes to oppose the papal Church, if necessary with a council in Germany and free of the Papacy. After the Pope condemned in Exsurge Domine fifty-two of Luther's theses as heresy, German opinion considered a council the best method to reconcile existing differences.
German Catholics, diminished in number, hoped for a council to clarify matters. It took a generation for the council to materialise because of papal reluctance, given that a Lutheran demand was the exclusion of the papacy from the Council, because of ongoing political rivalries between France and Germany and the Turkish dangers in the Mediterranean. Under Pope Clement VII, troops of the Catholic Holy Roman Emperor Charles V sacked Papal Rome in 1527, "raping, burning, the like had not been seen since the Vandals". Saint Peter's Basilica and the Sistine Chapel were used for horses. This, together with the Pontiff's ambivalence between Germany, led to his hesitation. Charles V favoured a council, but needed the support of King Francis I of France, who attacked him militarily. Francis I opposed a general council due to partial support of the Protestant cause within France. In 1532 he agreed to the Nuremberg Religious Peace granting religious liberty to the Protestants, in 1533 he further complicated matters when suggesting a general council to include both Catholic and Protestant rulers of Europe that would devise a compromise between the two theological systems.
This proposal met the opposition of the Pope for it gave recognition to Protestants and elevated the secular Princes of Europe above the clergy on church matters. Faced with a Turkish attack, Charles held the support of the Protestant German rulers, all of whom delayed the opening of the Council of Trent. In reply to the Papal bull Exsurge Domine of Pope Leo X, Martin Luther burned the document and appealed for a general council. In 1522 German diets joined in the appeal, with Charles V seconding and pressing for a council as a means of reunifying the Church and settling the Reformation controversies. Pope Clement VII was vehemently against the idea of a council, agreeing with Francis I of France, after Pope Pius II, in his bull Execrabilis and his reply to the University of Cologne, set aside the theory of the supremacy of general councils laid down by the Council of Constance. Pope Paul III, seeing that the Protestant Reformation was no longer confined to a few preachers, but had won over various princes in Germany, to its ideas, desired a council.
Yet when he proposed the idea to his cardinals, it was unanimously opposed. Nonetheless, he sent nuncios throughout Europe to propose the idea. Paul III issued a decree for a general council to be held in Mantua, Italy, to begin on 23 May 1537. Martin Luther wrote the Smalcald Articles in preparation for the general council; the Smalcald Articles were designed to define where the Lutherans could and could not compromise. The council was ordered by the Emperor and Pope Paul III to convene in Mantua on 23 May 1537, it failed to convene after another war broke out between France and Charles V, resulting in a non-attendance of French prelates. Protestants refused to attend as well. Financial difficulties in Mantua led the Pope in the autumn of 1537 to move the council to Vicenza, where participation was poor; the Council was postponed indefinitely on 21 May 1539. Pope Paul III initiated several internal Church reforms while Emperor Charles V convened with Protestants at an imperial diet in Regensburg, to reconcile differences.
Unity failed betw
Protestantism is the second largest form of Christianity with collectively between 800 million and more than 900 million adherents worldwide or nearly 40% of all Christians. It originated with the 16th century Reformation, a movement against what its followers perceived to be errors in the Roman Catholic Church. Protestants reject the Roman Catholic doctrine of papal supremacy and sacraments, but disagree among themselves regarding the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, they emphasize the priesthood of all believers, justification by faith alone rather than by good works, the highest authority of the Bible alone in faith and morals. The "five solae" summarise basic theological differences in opposition to the Roman Catholic Church. Protestantism is popularly considered to have begun in Germany in 1517 when Martin Luther published his Ninety-five Theses as a reaction against abuses in the sale of indulgences by the Roman Catholic Church, which purported to offer remission of sin to their purchasers.
However, the term derives from the letter of protestation from German Lutheran princes in 1529 against an edict of the Diet of Speyer condemning the teachings of Martin Luther as heretical. Although there were earlier breaks and attempts to reform the Roman Catholic Church—notably by Peter Waldo, John Wycliffe, Jan Hus—only Luther succeeded in sparking a wider and modern movement. In the 16th century, Lutheranism spread from Germany into Denmark, Sweden, Latvia and Iceland. Reformed denominations spread in Germany, the Netherlands, Scotland and France by reformers such as John Calvin, Huldrych Zwingli, John Knox; the political separation of the Church of England from the pope under King Henry VIII began Anglicanism, bringing England and Wales into this broad Reformation movement. Protestants have developed their own culture, with major contributions in education, the humanities and sciences, the political and social order, the economy and the arts, many other fields. Protestantism is diverse, being more divided theologically and ecclesiastically than either the Roman Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, or Oriental Orthodoxy.
Without structural unity or central human authority, Protestants developed the concept of an invisible church, in contrast to the Roman Catholic view of the Catholic Church as the visible one true Church founded by Jesus Christ. Some denominations do have a worldwide scope and distribution of membership, while others are confined to a single country. A majority of Protestants are members of a handful of Protestant denominational families: Adventists, Anglicans, Reformed, Lutherans and Pentecostals. Nondenominational, charismatic and other churches are on the rise, constitute a significant part of Protestant Christianity. Proponents of the branch theory consider Protestantism one of the three major divisions of Christendom, together with the Roman Catholic Church and Orthodoxy. Six princes of the Holy Roman Empire and rulers of fourteen Imperial Free Cities, who issued a protest against the edict of the Diet of Speyer, were the first individuals to be called Protestants; the edict reversed concessions made to the Lutherans with the approval of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V three years earlier.
The term protestant, though purely political in nature acquired a broader sense, referring to a member of any Western church which subscribed to the main Protestant principles. However, it is misused to mean any church outside the Roman and Eastern Orthodox communions. Protestantism as a general term is now used in contradistinction to the other major Christian traditions, i.e. Roman Catholicism and Orthodoxy. During the Reformation, the term protestant was hardly used outside of German politics. People who were involved in the religious movement used the word evangelical. For further details, see the section below. Protestant became a general term, meaning any adherent of the Reformation in the German-speaking area, it was somewhat taken up by Lutherans though Martin Luther himself insisted on Christian or evangelical as the only acceptable names for individuals who professed Christ. French and Swiss Protestants instead preferred the word reformed, which became a popular and alternative name for Calvinists.
The word evangelical, which refers to the gospel, was used for those involved in the religious movement in the German-speaking area beginning in 1517. Nowadays, evangelical is still preferred among some of the historical Protestant denominations in the Lutheran and United Protestant traditions in Europe, those with strong ties to them. Above all the term is used by Protestant bodies in the German-speaking area, such as the Evangelical Church in Germany. In continental Europe, an Evangelical is either a Calvinist, or a United Protestant; the German word evangelisch means Protestant, is different from the German evangelikal, which refers to churches shaped by Evangelicalism. The English word evangelical refers to evangelical Protestant churches, therefore to a certain part of Protestantism rather than to Protestantism as a whole; the English word traces its roots back to the Puritans in England, where Evangelicalism originated, was brought to the United States. Martin Luther always disliked the term Lutheran, preferring the term evangelical, derived from euangelion, a Greek word meaning "good news", i.e. "gospel".
The followers of