Essay on The Great Schism

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The Great Schism

During the late 14th century and the early 15th century there was a great division in the Catholic Church. The Papacy was becoming blurred. The center of the Roman Catholic Church had been moved from Rome to the city of Avignon during the reign of Pope Clement V; and there was now a movement to return the center of power back to Rome. This movement was first truly seen under Pope Gregory XI and his successor Pope Urban VI. Earlier Pope Urban V had moved the center to Rome but it had been proven to be no more than a temporary idea; he had gone back to Avignon to die and there his replacement, Pope Gregory XI was elected . This along with other political problems and circumstances created a split in the loyalty among
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Pope Clement VII was also the cousin of the French king, which insured that the church would be under French influence. The cardinals insisted that they had to elect a new pope, Pope Clement VII, because the election of Pope Urban VI was not valid. They were coerced into electing the Roman pope for fear of their lives; a mob of Italians outside of the conclave that elected Pope Urban VI had threatened to massacre the cardinals if a foreigner was chosen as the replacement for Gregory XI.
None the less the Papacy was now divide. The saying "United we stand, while divided we fall." is very valid in this instance. The church is having many problems around this time period and many people are converting, or shale we say shifting, to other forms or Christianity. Whereas before these problems occurred the church was the central power in Western Europe and had great influence over the governments in their sphere of power. This event, the schism, caused a split in the Catholic Church and divided countries among the two popes. "Everyone realized that the schism resulting from the counter-election of Cardinal Robert of Geneva as Pope Clement VII . . . was a tragedy for the church . . ."
England, the Holy Roman Empire, Hungary Roman Empire, Bohemia, and Poland supported Pope Urban VI. While Pope Clement VII had gained support from France, Napales, Scotland, Castile, and Aragon. This
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