Becoming Modern: The Catholic Reformation (Episode #43)

We examine the long movement for reform stretching from the Middle Ages through the 1600s, in which Catholic leaders strove to centralize and standardize church teachings. Mystics like Teresa of Avila and artists like Bernini inspired a physically and emotionally compelling form of worship centering on the sufferings of Christ and the Virgin Mary, while the elite special forces of the new piety were the Jesuits, whose schools and missions spread the new Catholicism within Europe and around the world, as far away as China. The Catholic Reformation, much more than just a negative response to the Protestant Reformation, served to further many of the same ideas and aspirations as its Protestant counterpart. Suggested Further Reading: Bireley, “The Refashioning of Catholicism”

Also see all 8 episodes On the History of Christianity

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