XXI Seaweed Symposium

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History Of The Catholic Church

As opposed to popular belief, the modern Catholic Church was not founded by Jesus, the holy messenger of God who formed the basis of Christianity. However, it is a continuation of the system set up by Jesus in Judea when he was alive. This has come about through Pentacost, an occasion where the Holy Spirit descended upon the apostles to beckon them to begin the church. Thus the apostles are the modern bishops and the pope succeeds Saint Peter.

The First Stage

Taking the crux of how Jesus worked, the bishops in the Roman Empire eventually began to regularly resolve regional policy issues in congregations by 2 A.D. In the ensuing century, the pope or the Bishop of Rome erected the court of law to solve issues that regular bishops failed to resolve. The spread of Christianity was not uneventful. It took quite a few sacrifices until Constantine I legalized it and Theododius I made it the state religion. The well-developed Roman infrastructure aided the spread of the new religion and was accepted most in urban areas initially. Moreover, the lower castes, social outcastes and the slaves were quick to convert to Christianity. Soon, the church began to enjoy a vast area under it, with 5 main jurisdictions: Jerusalem, Rome, Alexandria, Antioch and Constantinople.

The Second Stage

After the fall of the Roman Empire in the west, a lot of monasteries were set up that helped spread Christianity in Northern Europe. However, with the advent of Islam in the middle of 7 A.D., the church was left with Rome and Constantinople jurisdictions only. With this, the tussle between Islam and Christianity went on for a few centuries.

The Third Stage

Around 16 A.D., there were major reforms introduced in the catholic church. Despite the popularity of Protestantism, Catholicism continued to grow in leaps and bound in the rest of the world. It did lose its footing in Europe only to spread to other areas. The next major reformation in the history of the Catholic Church came in 1960s with respect to the religious practices.

Ever since, the Catholic Church has been evolving and improving its policies. Today, there are a lot of issues that have been addressed and accepted like sexual abuse and homosexuality. While the former has induced a new set of policies to protect victims and any future incident to happen, the latter has become more acceptable since homosexuality was previously not accepted in Catholicism.

 
 

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