At an early age, John Calvin found his calling to God to the chagrin of his father, who wanted him to be a lawyer. This calling to God helped Calvin bring about changes to the church. Even though Calvin traveled to some isolated spots in Europe preaching his sermons, the changes occurred all throughout Europe and then into the Americas. All these changes began humbly in France in the early 1500's.
According to Lord, John Cauvin or Calvin as we know him, was born July 10th, 1509 in Noyon, which is in the Picardy region of France (a cathedral city), and died in 1564 in Geneva, Switzerland. He was born to a notary, Gerard Cauvin and his wife Jeanne Le Franc, Calvin was one of five sons. His mother died when he was young and when his father remarried she added two daughters to their mix.
Although Calvin was not born an aristocrat, he was not a peasant like Martin Luther. He was born into a good family and received an excellent education through the good fortune of his father. His father had a professional connection through a noble family (Lord).
Calvin received a good private education with that families children. He earned his masters degree by the time he was eighteen. He was pushed by his father to go into law and he did; he studied under many distinguish men. He continued on with his fathers encouragement, and earned his doctorate at Orleans in the Law facility. Then for some reason not known to us because Calvin was a private person, he underwent a sudden conversion (Holder).
Calvin decided to commit the rest of his life to theology and to the reform of the Church. Even
at Calvin's early age of twenty three he was acknowledged to be the head of the reform party in France (Lord). The same year he graduated from Law school, Calvin joined the reformers in Germany and published the books of Seneca on Clemency(Holder).
In 1533, Calvin went back to France where there was a great deal of commotion going on. All of these new ideas were now reaching scholars, the courts and other circles of people. In 1534, as
French parishioners were coming out of church, they had found a large piece of paper from Switzerland posted on the church door condemning the mass. This led to the royal repression, where the French government went around arresting or killing as many French protestants as they could (Hunt, Martin, Rosenwein, Hsia & Smith, 2009).
Calvin was forced to take refuge with some other reformers at a castle in Pau with Queen Marguerite of Navarre (King Francis I's sister: she was a noble name in church history). After living this fugitive life style for a while he decided to flee to Switzerland, where at twenty six he published the writings of his catechism, Institutes for the Christian Religion. He published these works with a bold preface addressed to King Francis I to help convince him that protestants were of no threat to his rule, but that did not work (Lord).
The Institutes for the Christian Religion consists...