Florovsky Paper Abstract 20 - Reformation and Counter-Reformation: The Catholic Mission in England and Why It Failed

Feast of the Holy Apostles Archippus, Philemon & Onesimos

AFTER THE theological ideas of Martin Luther, John Calvin, and other Protestant Reformers spread on the Continent and in the British Isles, the Latin Rite Catholic Church mounted a Counter-Reformation campaign. Religious orders like the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) and the Capuchins (a Franciscan order) succeeded—as even James R. Payton, Jr, recognized in Getting the Reformation Wrong: Correcting Some Misunderstandings (IVP Academic: 2010)—in taking back some territory and bringing back some Protestant converts to the Catholic Church. In one country, however, all the efforts and sacrifices of clerical and lay martyrs seemed to have failed. I propose to discuss why Catholics, in spite of (and sometimes because of) tremendous plans, sacrifices and heroism, failed in their mission even to obtain freedom of worship in their native land throughout the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The presentation will include stories of those martyred saints who died in that failed mission and analysis of the tangle of religion and politics during the long Reformation era.

Stephanie A. Mann is the author of Supremacy and Survival: How Catholics Endured the English Reformation (Scepter Publishers: 2009/2010). She has also written for OSV’s The Catholic Answer Magazine, The National Catholic Register, Joseph Pearce’s St. Austin Review, Homiletic & Pastoral Review, The Latin Mass Magazine, The Catholic World Report, and First Things. Mann earned her B.A. and M.A. degrees in English Literature at Wichita State University. She lives in Wichita, Kansas and blogs at www.supremacyandsurvival.blogspot.com

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