Edward VI changed ‘The church’ more than Henry VIII
Henry VIII reigned from 1509 to 1547. Henry made changes to the church, he made himself head of the English Church instead of the Pope he also closed down all the monasteries. Henry did this for his own reasons:
Catherine of Aragon, had given him a daughter, but no son. Catherine of Aragon had many miscarriages and it was clear that the chances of her giving birth to a healthy son were small. Henry believed that to make sure the Tudor dynasty survived he needed a son. By 1525 Henry had decide that he wanted a new wife to give him son. Only the Pope could give Henry a divorce and the pope refused. So Henry made himself in charge of the English Church. Meanwhile, Henry had fallen in love with Anne Boleyn. A year later Anne Boleyn had given Henry a son Edward. Then Archbishop of Canterbury, acted on orders from Henry and declared Anne and Henry man and wife.
In 1547 Edward succeeded to the throne on the death of his father early in the year. He only reigned till 1553. Edward also made changes to the church, the mass was abolished and replaced with a communion service. Edward changed a lot of things because he was a Protestant. This essay will look at and analyse the evidenced to find out whether the statement is correct.
The beliefs and changes during Henry’s reign were that the pope was made not the head of English Church, Catholicism, monasteries closed down, Henry’s son Edward born. Although he knew Edward would the next king, Henry decided to have him educated by two leading Protestants, English translation of the Bible was published, act of six articles supported all beliefs and Catholic church services: Said Protestants were to be persecuted, Purgatory this was half-way between heaven and Hell. As you passed through, you were punished to clean you from your sins. But the Church provided help for you to get out of Purgatory more quickly. During your life you could buy ‘indulgencies’ from a bishop, which meant you weren’t punished for sins. In fact, any money given to the church for the
building, decoration or repair of your parish church could help you in purgatory and also the mass this was said daily by a priest. Most people believed that at the Mass the bread and wine actually became the body and blood of Christ. Beliefs and changes during Edward’s reign were Protestant, Chantries were dissolved this was an attack on the belief in purgatory and the practice of saying prayers for the dead, Priests were allowed to get married. The Catholic did not allow priests to marry, a new Protestant prayer Book was introduced for the church, with services in English, not Latin. Remember that the prayer book laid down all the beliefs of the church. Also the mass was abolished and replaced with the communion service. At communion the bread and the wine only represented Christ, they did not become Christ’s blood + body and Predestination this was a belief that it had already been decided whether a person was gong to heaven or Hell. You could not buy your way or anything.
A church service in Henry’s reign and how he changed them: The Mass was usually said this when people get given some wine and some bread and then they actually believe it becomes Christ blood and body. The church services and the Bible were in Latin. Many people said they found it difficult to feel close to God if they couldn’t read the Bible for themselves or understand the services. He changed the services by getting an English translation of the Bible published. Also an act of Six Articles supported all Catholic beliefs and Catholic church service. A church service in Edward’s reign and what changes he made to them: Since Edward had been educated Protestant a lot of changes began to take place. First a new Protestant Prayer Book was introduced for the church, with church services in English, not Latin. Then the Mass was abolished and replaced with the communion service. At communion the bread and wine only represented Christ, they did not become Christ. It was a service of remembrance, not a sacrifice.
In Henry’s reign the churches were very beautiful, the altars were very beautifully decorated, there are stained glass windows, there is rushes and also the church roofs were beautifully decorated. Henry also closed down a lot of the monasteries he did this because Henry had fought in some very expensive wars in Europe and this had made him bankrupt. So he closed down some of the
monasteries because the masteries were very rich. They owned about a quarter of all land in the country. So this made him very rich again. In Edward’s reign he made a lot of changes to the churches, he took out the beautiful altars and replaced them with a wooden table, he took out the stained glass windows and replaced them with plain windows, he took out the rushed which were on the floor and replaced them with tiles on the floor, he change the beautiful roofs with plain and boring ones and all the decorated walls were whitewashed.
The Church of England was controlled by the Pope at the start of Henry’s reign. However soon Henry
wanted to control the Church of his own country rather than the Pope. So Henry asked Thomas Cromwell to send out some inspectors to report on the state of the monasteries with a view to controlling them and inheriting their wealth. Here are some things the inspectors found out: one found the prior in bed with a Woman, both naked, about 11 o’clock in the morning. Also another inspector found the Abbey of Essebourne and the Priory of sulbred, because of their poverty, were not able to lodge these people. They were compelled to ride out of their way to Waverley Abbey to lodge. Also an inspector said: ‘I spent a good time knocking at the Abbot’s door, neither sound nor sign of life appearing. I found a short pole-axe standing behind the door, and with it I dashed the door to pieces. About the house I go, and find his woman.’ In 1534 the act of supremacy made the king head of the English Church not the pope. When Henry died his son Edward VI became king and Head of the Church of England at the age of nine Edward’s Protestant advisers influenced him to change official policies on Religion.
In Henry’s reign the impact of changes to the churchgoers were: people began to criticise the church because they said it was too wealthy and did not use it’s money to help the poor. Instead, the bishops and the monks lived in luxury. Also many priests and bishops have several jobs this meant they couldn’t do their job properly. Some priests never visited their parishes, leaving people who could not
read or write to take the services and people did not like this and also since the Bible and service were still in Latin many people found it hard to understand and feel close to God. When Edward came in as King he changed the service into English and the Bible into English and people liked this a lot.
I think during both of the kings reign they both made a lot of changes. Some of the things they changed were the beliefs, he got rid of purgatory and brought in predestination this was when it was all ready decided whether you were going to Heaven or hell. You could not buy your way to heaven, the mass was abolished and he brought in a communion service this was when the wine and bread only represented Christ it did not become Christ and a new Protestant prayer book was introduced for the church, with services in English, not Latin. Edward also made a lot of changes to the church. First he got rid of the beautiful altars and replaced them with a wooden table, then he took out the stained glass windows and replaced them with plain ones, also he changed the beautiful roofs with plan and boring ones and he whitewashed al the walls. Edward also changed the church services. Henry didn’t make so many changes. The changes he made were. He closed a lot of the monasteries because he had fought in some very expensive wars in Europe so this had made him bankrupt. So he closed down a lot of monasteries because he knew they were very rich and they owned about half of the land. He had also made himself head of the Church of England. He did this because the Pope would not let Henry marry Anne Boleyn. Some of the change that Edward and Henry made were bigger changes than others and some had a greater impact on the people. First people began to criticise the church. They said it was too wealthy and did not use its money to help the poor. Instead, the bishop’s and the monks in Monasteries lived in luxury. Henry’s changes lasted longer than Edward’s changes. Also I think Henry’s changes were more popular by the people than Edward’s changes because Edward came into the throne he changed the belief of Catholicism to Protestant and not many people liked that also he changed the beautiful churches and made them all plain and boring and also he changed the services. I think over all Edward made the most changes to the church.