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Historical Development of Christianity

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Summarize the meaning of significant rituals, symbols, myths, and sacred texts in Christianity.
- Rise of the papacy in the West
- Schism between East and West
- The Reformation of the 16th century

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Let's take a closer look at the four questions. I also attached a supporting article.


1. Summarize the meaning of significant rituals, symbols, myths, and sacred texts in Christianity.

Although many Christian rituals and religious practices vary between denomination, individual church and individual Christian, some practices are common to virtually all forms of Christianity. Most Christians attend worship services at church on Sundays, which generally include singing, prayer and a sermon to worship God and to keep the Sabbath Day holy (commandment). Most Christian churches have a special ritual for ordination, or designating a person fit for a leadership position in the church. At home, most practicing Christians pray regularly and many read the Bible (God's road map to life). Nearly all Christians will have been baptized (washing away of original sin and/or dedicating your life to Jesus Christ as a Christian), either as an infant or as an adult, and regularly participate in communion (also called the Lord's Supper and the Eucharist in remembrance of Jesus' sacrifice on the cross, mainly for dieing for the sins of all human being so we could be reunited to God through faith in the cross; our sins are remembered no more; instead, God sees Jesus's righteousness for those that believe). Baptism and communion are considered sacraments - sacred rituals instituted by Christ himself. The Catholic Church recognizes five additional sacraments, as well as many other distinctive practices that are known as "sacramentals" or "devotions" and include praying the rosary and going on pilgrimages. Again, all rituals professing their faith and beliefs. Both Catholic and Orthodox Churches have religious orders, ordaining priests and ministers into the priesthood or clery. The most distinctive practice of Orthodoxy is the emphasis on icons, although Catholics use them as well (http://www.religionfacts.com/christianity/practices.htm).

The following chart lists the rituals and practices common to most Christians used in worshipping and learning about the Lord, noting variations between denominations, as well as practices unique to particular denominations.

(1) General Christian Practices
· Baptism
· Confirmation
· Communion
· Sunday Services
· Prayer
· Bible Study
· Evangelism and Missions
· Ordination
· Marriage
· Healing
· Funerals

(2) Distinctive Protestant Rituals & Practices
· The Altar Call (Evangelical)
· Speaking in Tongues (Pentecostal)
· Spirit-Led Worship (Quaker)

(3) Distinctive Catholic and Orthodox Rituals & Practices
· Mass
· Confession
· Penance
· Last Rites
· Canonization and Veneration of Saints
· Devotion to Mary
· Praying the Rosary
· Pilgrimages
· Stations of the Cross
· Icons
· Ordination to Religious Orders
· Monastic Life (e.g, living a holy life of prayer)
· Holy Water
· Exorcism (e..g, meaning casting out evil spirits from possessing people's bodies, just like Jesus and Paul did in the New Testament)

(From http://www.religionfacts.com/christianity/practices.htm).

2. Rise of the papacy in the West

The rise of the bishop of Rome over the entire Catholic Church, an institution known as "the papacy," took centuries to develop. In the first few hundred years of the church, the term "pope," which means "father," was used for any important and respected bishop, and the bishop of Rome was one of several important bishops. Rome had always been honored for her association with Peter and Paul and her position as the church in the Empire's capital. However, this increased after Christianity was legalized under Emperor Constantine, the special status of that office grew even more with each passing Roman bishop. The doctrine of the supremacy of the pope finally reached its height in the late 13th century, when Pope Boniface VIII claimed full religious and secular authority over every human being (please see the attached article).

3. Schism between East and West

In 1054, regional, political, practical and doctrinal issues divided the Christian church: Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy. The beginning of the conflict came with the removal of the Roman capital from Rome to Constantinople, which planted seeds of division. After A.D. 325, for example, tensions grew until Cardinal Humbert anathematized the eastern Patriarch on St. Sophia's ...

Solution Summary

Summarize tithe meaning of significant rituals, symbols, myths, and sacred texts in Christianity. The historical aspect of Christianity includes topics including the rise of the papacy in the West, Schism between East and West and the Reformation of the 16th century.