An examination of the development of the Church in England from Henry VIII to Edward VI.
The paper looks at the development of the Church of England from its beginnings as an English version of Roman Catholicism, to its later establishment as Protestant English, the basis of both Church and State in England. The paper asks why the counter-reformation failed under Mary Tudor, and how the Church established its law. It also examines in what respects and to what extent had the Church of England by 1553 became a Protestant Church.
“The church in England by 1553 had passed through a series of phases from the time of Henry VIII’s ‘Great Matter’ to the death of his son Edward. By examining the different actions taken over the years we can begin to see how the church changed from Henry’s view of an Anglican Catholic institution, unconnected with the strident, evangelical Protestantism of Germany to a Protestant church in England which would survive the attempted counter-Reformation of Queen Mary. The Church of England was founded on a basis that was both clerical and secular, and was enforced on the people by methods that were in turn both harsh and more circumspect. We will examine both types of methods and look at the role played by the bishops of England, the people of the country and by those who possessed lay power in the Council and magistracies.”