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Christianity Essay

1323 words - 5 pages

Since the life, death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth, the once united early Christian Churches founded by the prophet himself have split into many denominations, each pertaining similar core values. Where these denominations vary from one another are their grasp on the basis of Christianity, that being their traditions, sacred texts, ethical teachings and personal devotion to their faith. The five denominations of Christianity which are later to be described are Anglicanism, Protestantism, Catholicism, Pentecostalism and Orthodoxy.Anglicanism is a religion that diverged from the Roman Catholic Church in a period of time not long after the Protestant Reformation called the English Reformation. Anglicanism still has some features present in the Catholic Church, but shows uniqueness in some aspects such as its governing body, freedom in teachings and nature of Eucharist. Anglican churches are not bound to the teachings of a higher authority; they are autonomous from control of a higher authority . Their appointed leader, the archbishop of Canterbury, merely serves as a symbolic leader and considered only as a "first amongst peoples" . This freedom gives diversity in teachings in different churches, for example one church may focus on Protestant influence, where another may be more Catholic influenced. The teachings of Anglicanism are loosely based on the 16th century "Book of Common Prayer" , which has been modified and republished many times for different provinces around the world. The original text only sets a standard for prayer; contextual differences and the freedom of interpretation of the sacred text allow many forms of Anglican worship to exist. In practicing the sacrament of Eucharist, Anglicans believe in the theology of consubstantiation. That is they believe that when receiving the substances of the body and blood, they are receiving symbol of Jesus' spirituality, as opposed to believing the substances change into the body and blood of Christ. Anglicans view the sacraments as "an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace" , so in regard to the sacrament of Eucharist, Anglicans have more of a metaphysical view on the sacrament .Protestantism is the label given to denominations of Christianity formed around the reformation of the Catholic Church, in which people protested "thus protestant" against the rule of the Pope for flaws in Roman Catholicism, including the selling of indulgences and corruption in the churches upper hierarchy . Protestants diverge from their other Christian brothers in their acceptance of sacraments, view on the bible and the priesthood of all believers. Unlike other denominations, Protestants only accept two sacraments, Baptism and Communion . These are documented in the bible as the only two sacraments commanded by God. This practice in only performing the previous two sacraments comes from the Protestants rejection of Catholic practices during the reformation and their high acceptance of...

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