Christianity

Essay by kirstin89High School, 11th gradeB+, September 2007

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Since the life, death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth, the once united early Christian Churches founded by the prophet himself have split into many denominations, each pertaining similar core values. Where these denominations vary from one another are their grasp on the basis of Christianity, that being their traditions, sacred texts, ethical teachings and personal devotion to their faith. The five denominations of Christianity which are later to be described are Anglicanism, Protestantism, Catholicism, Pentecostalism and Orthodoxy.

Anglicanism is a religion that diverged from the Roman Catholic Church in a period of time not long after the Protestant Reformation called the English Reformation. Anglicanism still has some features present in the Catholic Church, but shows uniqueness in some aspects such as its governing body, freedom in teachings and nature of Eucharist. Anglican churches are not bound to the teachings of a higher authority; they are autonomous from control of a higher authority .

Their appointed leader, the archbishop of Canterbury, merely serves as a symbolic leader and considered only as a "first amongst peoples" . This freedom gives diversity in teachings in different churches, for example one church may focus on Protestant influence, where another may be more Catholic influenced. The teachings of Anglicanism are loosely based on the 16th century "Book of Common Prayer" , which has been modified and republished many times for different provinces around the world. The original text only sets a standard for prayer; contextual differences and the freedom of interpretation of the sacred text allow many forms of Anglican worship to exist. In practicing the sacrament of Eucharist, Anglicans believe in the theology of consubstantiation. That is they believe that when receiving the substances of the body and blood, they are receiving symbol of Jesus' spirituality, as opposed to believing the substances change...