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Jesus' teachings on divorce and Paul's advocacy of monogamy began the process of elevating the status of women so that Christian women tended to enjoy greater security and equality than did women in surrounding cultures. In the ancient world infanticide was not legal but was rarely prosecuted. A broad distinction was popularly made between infanticide and infant exposure which was practiced on a gigantic scale with impunity.
Many exposed children died, but many were taken by speculators who raised them to be slaves or prostitutes. It is not possible to ascertain, with any degree of accuracy, what diminution of infanticide resulted from legal efforts against it in the Roman empire. Emperor Constantine 's Edict of Milan in AD ended the state sponsored persecution of Christians in the East and his own conversion to Christianity was a significant turning point in history.
In AD , Constantine conferred the First Council of Nicaea to gain consensus and unity within Christianity, with a view to establishing it as the religion of the Empire.
The population and wealth of the Roman Empire had been shifting east, and around the year , Constantine established the city of Constantinople as a new imperial city which would be the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire. Although cultural continuity and interchange would continue between these Eastern and Western Roman Empires, the history of Christianity and Western culture took divergent routes, with a final Great Schism separating Roman and Eastern Christianity in AD.
The remarkable transformation of Christianity from peripheral sect, to major force within the Empire is illustrated by the influence held by St Ambrose , the Bishop of Milan. A Doctor of the Church and one of the most influential ecclesiastical figures of the 4th century, Ambrose became a player in Imperial politics, courted for his influence by competing contenders for the Imperial throne.
When the Emperor Theodosius I ordered the punitive massacre of thousands of the citizens of Thessaloniki , Ambrose admonished him publicly, refused him the Eucharist and called on him to perform a public penance, a call to which the Christian Emperor submitted. Theodosius reigned albeit for a brief interim as the last Emperor of a united Eastern and Western Roman Empire.
In Theodosius sought to block the restoration of the pagan Altar of Victory to the Roman Senate and then fought against Eugenius , who courted pagan support for his own bid for the imperial throne. Thus, the Catholic Encyclopedia lauds Theodosius as: .
The political world is full of leaders who have called themselves democratic, although their actions might not have always been as democratic as voters might have hoped. Good Point Karl. If she does, still bow when accepting her hand: do not shake like your do your mantag, do not squeeze and do not lift her hand higher than it was extended. The leader also needs plenty of emotional intelligence to ensure the team works well together. I think practical servantship is where we should start. I agree success is measured in the skills a person uses to accomplish the goals, which are obtain in their professional and educational career.
He stamped out the last vestiges of paganism, put an end to the Arian heresy in the empire, pacified the Goths, left a famous example of penitence for a crime, and reigned as a just and mighty Catholic emperor. Many of these works remain influential in politics, law, ethics and other fields. A new genre of literature was also born in the fourth century: church history. After the fall of Rome culture in the west returned to a subsistence agrarian form of life.
What little security there was in this world was provided by the Christian church. In the absence of a magister militum living in Rome, even the control of military matters fell to the pope. Gregory the Great c — administered the church with strict reform. A trained Roman lawyer and administrator, and a monk, he represents the shift from the classical to the medieval outlook and was a father of many of the structures of the later Roman Catholic Church.
According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, he looked upon Church and State as co-operating to form a united whole, which acted in two distinct spheres, ecclesiastical and secular, but by the time of his death, the papacy was the great power in Italy: . From this time forth the varied populations of Italy looked to the pope for guidance, and Rome as the papal capital continued to be the centre of the Christian world. The period between and , often referred to as the "Dark Ages," could also be designated the "Age of the Monk". Christian aesthetes, like St. Benedict's Rule has been one of the great facts in the history of western Europe, and that its influence and effects are with us to this day.
Monasteries were models of productivity and economic resourcefulness teaching their local communities animal husbandry, cheese making, wine making and various other skills. Medical practice was highly important in medieval monasteries, and they are best known for their contributions to medical tradition, but they also made some advances in other sciences such as astronomy.
The formation of these organized bodies of believers distinct from political and familial authority, especially for women, gradually carved out a series of social spaces with some amount of independence thereby revolutionizing social history. Charlemagne "Charles the Great" in English became king of the Franks in Sometimes called the "Father of Europe," Charlemagne instituted political and judicial reform and led what is sometimes referred to as the Early or Christian Renaissance.
The historian Geoffrey Blainey , likened the Catholic Church in its activities during the Middle Ages to an early version of a welfare state: "It conducted hospitals for the old and orphanages for the young; hospices for the sick of all ages; places for the lepers; and hostels or inns where pilgrims could buy a cheap bed and meal".
It supplied food to the population during famine and distributed food to the poor.
This welfare system the church funded through collecting taxes on a large scale and by owning large farmlands and estates. By the late 11th century, beginning with the efforts of Pope Gregory VII , the Church successfully established itself as "an autonomous legal and political The Catholic Church was very powerful, essentially internationalist and democratic in it structures and run by monastic organisations generally following Benedictine rule.
Men of a scholarly bent usually took Holy Orders and frequently joined religious institutes. Those with intellectual, administrative or diplomatic skill could advance beyond the usual restraints of society — leading churchmen from faraway lands were accepted in local bishoprics, linking European thought across wide distances. Complexes like the Abbey of Cluny became vibrant centres with dependencies spread throughout Europe.
Ordinary people also trekked vast distances on pilgrimages to express their piety and pray at the site of holy relics. The Inquisitions were religious courts originally created to protect faith and society by identifying and condemning heretics. It was rather a natural—one may almost say an inevitable—evolution of the forces at work in the thirteenth century As the twelfth century drew to a close the church was facing a crisis In the 13th-century Roman Pontifical, the prayer for ordaining women as deacons was removed, and ordination was re-defined and applied only to male Priests.
Woman-as-witch became a stereotype in the s until it was codified in by Pope Innocent VIII who declared "most witches are female. This treatment provides [dramatic] contrast to the respect given to women during the early era of Christianity and in early Europe Women were in many respects excluded from political and mercantile life; however, some leading churchwomen were exceptions. Medieval abbesses and female superiors of monastic houses were powerful figures whose influence could rival that of male bishops and abbots: "They treated with kings, bishops, and the greatest lords on terms of perfect equality; Kenneth Clarke wrote that the 'Cult of the Virgin' in the early 12th century "had taught a race of tough and ruthless barbarians the virtues of tenderness and compassion".
In , after centuries of strained relations, the Great Schism occurred over differences in doctrine, splitting the Christian world between the Catholic Church , centered in Rome and dominant in the West, and the Orthodox Church , centered in Constantinople , capital of the Byzantine Empire. Relations between the major powers in Western society: the nobility, monarchy and clergy, sometimes produced conflict. Pope's were powerful enough to challenge the authority of kings. The Investiture Controversy was perhaps the most significant conflict between Church and state in medieval Europe.
A series of Popes challenged the authority of monarchies over control of appointments, or investitures , of church officials. Moreover, they were vitally concerned with the trappings of political power. They plunged into Italian politics Their worldly interests and blatant political maneuverings only intensified the mounting disapproval of the papacy and provided the church's critics with more examples of the institution's corruption and decline.
As the Church grew more powerful and wealthy, many sought reform. The Dominican and Franciscan Orders were founded, which emphasized poverty and spirituality. Palestine, Syria, Persia, and Egypt—once the most heavily Christian areas in the world—quickly succumbed. By the eighth century, Muslim armies had conquered all of Christian North Africa and Spain and were moving into France.
The holdings of the old Roman Empire, known to modern historians as the Byzantine Empire, were reduced to little more than Greece. In desperation, the emperor in Constantinople sent word to the Christians of western Europe asking them to aid their brothers and sisters in the East. Historian Jonathan Riley-Smith says scholars are turning away from the idea subsequent crusades were materially motivated. A more complex picture of nobles and knights making sacrifices has emerged creating an increased interest in the religious and social ideas of the laity.
Crusading can no longer be defined solely as warfare against Muslims; the crusades were religious wars and the crusaders moved by ideas; and the issue of colonialism is no longer one considered worthy of serious discussion.
Secularists such as Hugo Grotius later expanded the idea of human rights and built on it. Aquinas continues to influence the works of leading political and legal philosophers. It cannot be denied, because they are morally based on the Judeo-Christian tradition and Graeco-Roman philosophy; they were codified in the West over many centuries, they have secured an established position in the national declarations of western democracies, and they have been enshrined in the constitutions of those democracies.
David Gushee says Christianity has a "tragically mixed legacy" when it comes to the application of its own ethics. He examines three cases of "Christendom divided against itself": the crusades and Frances' attempt at peacemaking with Muslims; Spanish conquerors and the killing of indigenous peoples and the protests against it; and the on-again off-again persecution and protection of Jews.
Charles Malik , a Lebanese academic, diplomat, philosopher and theologian was responsible for the drafting and adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. In the Middle Ages, the Church and the worldly authorities were closely related. Martin Luther separated the religious and the worldly realms in principle doctrine of the two kingdoms.
Luther's doctrine of the priesthood of all believers upgraded the role of laymen in the church considerably. The members of a congregation had the right to elect a minister and, if necessary, to vote for his dismissal Treatise On the right and authority of a Christian assembly or congregation to judge all doctrines and to call, install and dismiss teachers, as testified in Scripture ; This system was taken over by the other Reformed churches.