Middle Ages

  • Middle Ages Notes

    Medieval Church

    Foundations of the Medieval Church

             Jesus used parables to explain the message of love and morality.  Christians believed in His miracles.  He was crucified by the Romans.  Apostles spread Christianity throughout the eastern Mediterranean. Peter brought Christianity to Rome.

             The Bible contains the Gospels (stories of Jesus’ life) written 100 years after His death.  The Old Testament + the New Testament = the Christian Bible

             Early church leaders were St. Paul and the Apostles.  Over time, specially trained men, called priests, could administer sacraments. 

    The Sacraments

             Baptism: admittance to the church

             Confirmation: Holy Spirit is conferred upon those becoming adult members of the church

             Eucharist: communion—a major part of Mass (church service)

             Reconciliation: forgiveness by God for an act a person regrets

             Marriage: formal union of a man and woman

             Ordination: becoming a priest

             Last Rites: final blessing for sick and dying people


    Salvation: saving of your soul…gained through following the beliefs of the church and performing good deeds and living a moral life.


    Damnation: a result of living a life of sin (turning away from God) and being banished to hell.  Hell was ruled by Lucifer, who was cast out of heaven for showing false pride.


    Nuns and monks wanted to avoid war, sickness, sin, corruption, and wanted to serve God and fellow Christians.

             Duties: work, study, pray

             Vows: chastity, poverty, and obedience

             Life tasks: farming, cooking, sewing, building, etc. and Charitable tasks: hospitals, refuge for homeless, food for poor, lodging for travelers, and performing sacraments


    Lay Investiture: the king wanted to appoint church officials

              Henry IV needed church leaders support against powerful German lords

             Pope Gregory VII outlawed lay investiture and said it was corrupt and that any king who disobeyed would be excommunicated (kicked out) from the church

    Agreement: Church officials would appoint church leaders and kings could give titles and land grants to church officials


    Francis of Assisi turned to God after recovery from a battle.  He stole cloth from his wealthy father to get money to repair a church.  He renounced his wealth and dedicated his life to caring for the poor.  He founded a new order of monks called the Franciscans. 


             Travel around to care for the poor and sick

             Show others a humble, pious life,

             Work with nuns

             Educate Christians so they can more fully understand the word of God