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A Very Brief Overview of the Three Main Branches of Christianity

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Presentation on theme: "A Very Brief Overview of the Three Main Branches of Christianity"— Presentation transcript:

1 A Very Brief Overview of the Three Main Branches of Christianity
Catholicism, Eastern Orthodox, Protestantism

2 Catholicism Also called Roman Catholicism
Dates from the 1st century CE Organized by diocese, each headed by a bishop All report to bishop of Rome (Pope), tradition holds St. Peter was the first Major challenges to the Church came in 16th century with the rise of Protestantism. Catholic response was to correct abuses and reaffirm teachings / doctrines (i.e. the Council of Trent)

3 Catholic Beliefs good works + faith = salvation
seven sacraments (vital to salvation) Eucharist (Communion)—real presence of Christ entered through transubstantiation Church is essential to the mediation of God's love and grace to the world Priests cannot marry Belief in the Trinity Purgatory Ritual / tradition in services

4 Eastern Orthodox Split from the Western (Roman) Church in 1054, when the pope and the patriarch of Constantinople excommunicated each other. Today, approximately 150 million to 200 million followers of the Eastern Orthodox Church. Balkans, the eastern Mediterranean, and Russia, and there is a growing population in the United States.

5 Orthodox Beliefs Seven sacraments
Bishops must be unmarried or widowed. Priests and deacons are generally married men. Four ancient patriarchates of the church: Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey), Alexandria (Egypt), Antioch (Damascus, Syria), Jerusalem Plus 11 others around the world Each of the churches is governed by a bishop, known as a patriarch, archbishop, or metropolitan. Although the four ancient patriarchates (esp. Constantinople) are regarded as the highest, they are all officially treated as having equal weight in the church.

6 Protestantism Umbrella term for traditions that came about after the Reformation (1517 = Martin Luther) Widespread due to printing press, desire to return Catholic Church to its purer ways Luther was concerned with papal authority, indulgences, and the Church’s teaching on salvation Many denominations, many differences!!

7 Protestant Beliefs Justification (salvation) by grace (obtained through faith in Christ) alone, not works (sola fide) Bible = truth. Church not needed to interpret it “Priesthood of all believers” means all people have access to God, not just clergy Services stress Biblical preaching Generally, reject clerical celibacy (exceptions, i.e. Shakers)

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