Essay Question: Describe and analyze the ways in which 16th century Roman Catholics defended their faith against the Protestant Reformation.
As a result of the vast expansion of Protestantism and quickly decreasing numbers in Roman Catholics, the Counter Reformation was initiated by the Roman Catholic Church in order to reconcile the Catholics and Protestants into one faith. The Roman Catholics attempted to achieve this goal through several methods, addressing the abuses of the Church by accepting its mistakes and attempting to fix them; they established the Council of Trent to help them with reforming the Church. They also reaffirmed the Catholic beliefs, and attempted to check the growth of Protestantism with the use of the Roman Inquisition.
A key component of the reformation of the Roman Catholic Church included The Council of Trent which implemented many duties contributing to the purposes that it had existed for. The Council addressed the mistakes of the Church, and attempted to fix them. The Council of Trent required the Bishops to stay in their own dioceses, suppressing pluralism and simony, as well as forbidding the sale of indulgences. Clerics who kept concubines now had to give them up. The jurisdiction of bishops over all the clergy of their dioceses was made almost absolute, and bishops were ordered to visit every church in their diocese at least once every two years. The Council required every diocese to establish a seminary for the education and training of the clergy The Council of Trent directed the curriculum that was to be taught, and insisted that preference for admission be given to sons of the poor. Seminary professors were to determine if candidates for ordination had genuine callings as determined by purity of life, separation from the secular life, and a steady inclination toward the priesthood. This was a ground-breaking idea, since from the time of the early church, parents had determined their children's religious careers....
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