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Anglicanism as a Western Christian Tradition

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Anglicanism is a Western Christian tradition that evolved out of the practices, liturgy and identity of the Church of England following the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century. Persons who practice this faith are called Anglicans and the doctrine of the Anglican Church is an interesting mix of Catholicism and Protestant Reformation theology. There was a reformation spearheaded by Thomas Cranmer under the support of Henry viii, son. Thomas Cranmer wrote the book of common prayer which is widely used in the Anglican churches of today. The formation of the Anglican church happened for several reasons which include Henry viii and his two daughters Mary and Elizabeth I.

At first henry viii was declared defender of the faith by the Pope when he writes a book against a Lutheran. The Pope allows him to marry his dead brother’s virgin wife, Catherine of Aragon. Henry is upset by the fact that Catherine can’t birth him an heir instead she gives birth to a daughter, Mary. He claims that Catherine wasn’t a virgin when they were married and so is the reason he can’t have a son. He askes the pope to annul his marriage to her but the pope refuses to because he is being held hostage by Catherine’s nephew, the Emperor of Spain. Henry is alleged to be having an affair with the young and beautiful Anne Boleyn who is the reason for his request to annul his marriage. He saw an opportunity When Protestant Thomas Cranmer became Archbishop of Canterbury, Henry saw his chance to bypass the Pope’s authority and get what he wanted.

In 1531, Henry compelled the English clergy to accept him as head of the church in England. In 1532, Henry forced the national convocation to agree in The Submission of the Clergy that they would not promulgate any papal bull in England without the king’s consent. In 1534, Henry led Parliament to pass a series of laws depriving the Roman Catholic Church of any authority in England. The Act of Supremacy declared the king to be “the supreme head of the church in England” thus giving Henry the same legal authority over the English church that the Pope exercised over the Roman Catholic Church. He again tries to have an heir with his now wife Anne Boleyn, but she gives birth to a daughter Elizabeth I. He grows tired of her and later accuses her of incest, she is executed, and he marries his next wife Jane Seymour who dies following the birth of Henry VIII’s only legitimate son, Edward. Jane Seymour and her family were all protestants who raised Henry’s son as the first protestant king.

Price Edward becomes king at a young age he eventually dies as a teenager. Mary Tudor becomes queen she is at first popular among her subjects, but she soon gains the title bloody Mary after she executed many Protestants as a means of cleansing England this action only caused persons to hate Roman Catholics more. When Mary dies in 1558 her sister Elizabeth I, a Protestant, becomes queen. Despite many problems including frequent assassination plots from Roman Catholics, she supports the enterprising middle class and England prospers, the Book of Common Prayer is revised. She reintroduces the surplice, explaining that it is a clergyman’s uniform. The Black Rubric is gone, and a special license is required to preach, and Saints” days are reintroduced.

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Anglicanism as a Western Christian Tradition. (2018, December 17). GradesFixer. Retrieved October 27, 2020, from
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