Church laws in the middle ages

The need for church reform on a broader level was also clear from the church laws that were developed throughout the Middle Ages to guide and direct the life and activities of the church. In Italy during the 14th century Girolamo Savonarola (145298) preached against church abuses, as did Francisco Ximenes (1436-1517) in Spain. Pope Adrian VI (1522-23) admitted that corruption had touched even the highest levels of the prelates and clergy. In 1542 Pope Paul III (1534-49) called for a General Council of the Church at Trent to express more clearly the teachings of the church and to institute reform in the religious life of its members. This council attempted to state the differences between Catholic and Protestant teachings. It also established seminaries or schools for the training of priests in correct Catholic teaching and

ecumenical councils of the church

he first seven councils are recognized as such by the Orthodox and Catholic

churches. The remaining councils are rec

ognized only by the Catholic Church:

Nicaea I

325

Constantinople I

381

Ephesus

432

Chalcedon

451

Constantinople II

553

Constantinople III

680-81

Nicaea II

787

Constantinople IV

869-70

Lateran I (Rome)

1123

Lateran II

1139

Lateran III

1179

Lateran IV

1215

Lyons I

1245

Lyons II

1274

Vienne (France)

1311-12

Constance

1414-18

Basle-Ferrara-Florence

1431-45

Lateran V

1512-17

Trent

1545-63

Vatican I

1869-70

Vatican II

1962-65

exemplary living. During his pontificate Paul III also gave formal approval to the Society of Jesus, the Jesuit order founded by Ignatius of Loyola (1491-1556) in 1534. The Jesuits played a leading role in the church's program of spiritual renewal.

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