England broke away from the Pope and the Roman Catholic Church 467 years ago and now they did it again with the European Union

MEP`s (Members og the European Parlieament) voted overwhelmingly to approve the withdrawal agreement today. MEP`s ratified the Brexit Withdrawel Agreement by 621 votes to 49 following an emotional debate in Brussels today.

The UK will leave the EU on Friday night this week, and Nigel Farage is the happiest man in the world right now.

Nigel Farage had a speech in the parliament today and said the EU is anti-democratic, while most British MEP`s who spoke expressed deep sadness about Brexit. Many of them predicted that the UK will return to EU some times in the future.

Brexit, Exit, United Kingdom, England
Picture: The UK out of the EU

The Brexit party leader said this earlier today: «I`m hoping this begins the end of this project. It`s a bad project, it isn`t just undemocratic it`s anti-democratic…..

There is a historic battle going on now across the West. In Europe, America and elswhere. It is globalism against populism. And you may loathe populism, but I`ll tell you a funny thing – it`s becoming very popular.

And it has great benefits. No more financial contributions, no more European Court of Justice, no more common fisheries policy, no more being talked down to, no more being bullied, no more Guy Verhofstadt.»

Guy Verhofstadt is a Belgian politician who was the leader of the Allicance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe from 2009 to 2019. He has been a MEP from Belgium since 2009. He was also a Prime Minister of Beligium from 1999 to 2008.

He led the Allicance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Group (ALDE) from 2009 to 2019, and founded the inter-parliamentarian federalist Spinelli Group. He has been the European Parliament`s Brexit Coordinator and Chair of the Brexit Steering Group since 2016.

Verhofstadt is an advocate for federalisation of the European Union, and earlier today he said this; «What is in fact threatening Britain`s sovereignty most – the rules of our single market or the fact that tomorrow they may be planting Chinese 5G masts in the British islands?…..

It is sad to see a country leaving that twice liberated us, has twice given its blood to liberate Europe…

In the last couple of days I have received hundreds of mails from British citizens saying they desperately want to stay or return….. So this vote is not an adieu, this vote, in my opinion, is only an au revoir.»

Verhofstadt and Farage know the history of the United Kingdom. What`s happening today is similar to the era of Henry VIII who broke England`s ties with the Roman Catholic Church, becoming the sole head of the English Church. It was time for the English Reformation.

The English Reformation was a series of events in 16th – century England by which the Church of England broke away from the authority of the Pope and the Roman Catholic Church.

These events were, in part, associated with the wider European Protestant Reformation, a religious and political movement that affected the practice of Christianity across western and central Europe.

Caused included the invention of the printing press and increased circulation of the Bible, and the transmission of new knowledge and ideas among scholars, the upper and middle classes and readers in general.

However, the various phases of the English Reformation, which also covered Wales and Ireland, were largely driven by changes in government policy, to which public opinion gradually accommodated itself.

The English Reformation was at the outset more of a political affair than a theological dispute. The reality of political differences between Rome and England allowed growing theological disputes to come to the force.

Until the break with Rome, it was the Pope and general councils of the church that declared doctrine. Church law was governed by canon law with final jurisdiction in Rome. Church taxes were paid straight to Rome, and the Pope had the final word in the appointment of bishops.

The break with Rome was effected by a series of acts of Parliament passed between 1532 and 1534, among the 1534 Act of Supremacy, which declared that Henry was the «Supreme Head on earth of the Church of England».

But this title was renounced by Mary I in 1553. Under Mary, the whole process was reversed and the Church of England was again placed under papal jurisdiction. Soon after, Elizabeth reintroduced the Protestant faith but in a more moderate manner.

The structure and theology of the church was a matter of fierce dispute for generations.

Bishop, Pope, Catholic, People, Man, Line Art, Medieval
Picture: The Pope

The violent aspect of these disputes, manifested in the English Civil Wars, ended when the last Roman Catholic monarch, James II was desposed, and Parliament asked William III and Mary II to rule jointly in conjunction with the English Bill of Rights in 1688 (in the «Glorious Revolution»), from which emerged a church polity with an establshed church and a number of non-conformist churches whose members at first suffered various civil disabilities that were removed ove time.

The legacy of the previous Roman Catholic heritage and establishment as the state church remained an issue for some time and still exists today. A Substantial but dwindling minority from the late 16th to early 19th centuries remained Roman Catholic in England. Their chuch organisation remained illegal until the Relief Act of 1829.

The Reformation was a clash of two opposed schemes of salvation. The Catholic Church taught that the contrite person could cooperate with God towards their salvation by performing good works. Medieval Catholic worship was centered on the Mass, the church’s offering of the sacrifice of Christ’s body and blood.

The Mass was also an offering of prayer by which the living could help souls in purgatory. Protestants taught that fallen humanity was helpless and under condemnation until gien the grace of God trhough faith.

They believed the Chatholic emphasis on purgatory was an obstacle to true faith in God and the identification of the Mass with Christ’s sacrifice a blasphemous perversion of the Eucharist. In place of the Mass, Protestant worship was centered on the Bible, to them the only road to faith in Christ, either read or presented in sermons.

More calls for reform came from Renaissance humanists, such as Erasmus. Humanists downplayed the role of rites and ceremonies in achieving salvation and criticised the superstitious veneration of relics.

Erasmus and John Colet emphasised a simple, personal piety and a return ad fones («back to the sources») of Christian faith. Colet’s commentaries on the Pauline epistles emphasized double predestination and the worthlessness of human works.

Anne Boleyn’s own religious views were shaped by French humanists such as Jacques Lefèvre d’Étaples, whose 1512 commentaries on Paul’s epistles stated that human works were irrelevant to salvation five years before Luther publiched the same views.

Jacques Lefèvre d’Étaples was a French theologian and humanist. He was a precursor of the Protestant movement in France, and a friend of Erasmus. He anticipated some ideas that were important to the Protestant Reformation.

Jacques Lefèvre d’Étaples remained a Roman Catholic throughout his life, and sought to reform the Church without seperating from it. Several of his books were condemned as heretical, and he spent some time in exile. He was, however, a favorite of the king of France, Francis I, and enjoyed his protection.

Christian, Culture, German, Germany, History
Picture: Martin Luther (Protestant)

By the early 1520’s, the views of German reformer Martin Luther were known and disputed in England. The main plank of Luther’s theology was justification by faith alone rather than by good works. In this view, only faith, itself a gift from God, can secure the grace of God.

Justfication by faith alone threatened the whole basis of the Roman Catholic penitential system with its doctrine of purgatory, prayer for the death, indulgences, and the sacrifice character of the Mass.

Early Protestans portrayed Catholic practices such as confession to priests, clerical celibacy, and requirements to fast and kepp vows as burdensome and spiritually oppressive. Not only did purgatory lack any biblical basis according to Protestants, but the clergy were accused of using fear of purgatory to makke money from prayers and masses.

Catholics countered that justification by faith alone was a «licence to sin».

English Catholicism was strong and popular in the early 1500’s, and those who held Protestant sympathies would remain a religious minority until political events intervened. Protestant ideas were popular among some parts of the English population, especially among academics and merchants with connections to continental Europe.

Martin Luther was a German professor of theology, composer, priest, monk, and a ceminal figure in the protestant Reformation. Another word is the European Reformation, and it was a movement within Western Christianity in the sixteenth-century Europe that posed a religious and political challenge to the Roman Catholic Church and papal authority in particuar.

It started with Luther’s Ninety-five Thesis in 1517. About 500 years ago. There was no schism between the Catholic Church and the nascent Luther until the 1521 Edict of Worms. The edict condemned Luther and officially banned citizens of the Holy Roman Empire from defending or prpagating his ideas.

The end of the Reformation era is disputed: it could be considered to end with the enactment of the confessions of faith which began the Age of Orthodoxy.

Other suggested ending years relate to the Counter-Reformation, the Peace of Westphalia, or that it never ende since there are still Protesters today.

Those who identify with Luther`s wider teachings, are called Lutherans, though Luther insisted on Christian or Evangelical as the only acceptable names for individuals who professed Christ.

In two of his later works, Martin Luther expressed antagonistic, violent views toward Jews, and called for the burning of their synagogues and their deaths. His rhetoric was not directed at Jews alone, but also towards Roman Catholics, Anabaptists, and nontrinitarian Christians.

Luther was the most widely read author of his generation, and within Germany he acquired the status of a prophet. According to the prevailing opinion among historians, his anti-Jewish rhetoric contributed significantly to the development of antisemitism in Germany, and in the 1930’s and 1940’s provided an «ideal underpinning» for the Nazis’ attacks on Jews.

Reinhold Lewin writes that anybody who «wrote against the Jews for whatever reason believed he had the right to justify himself by triumphantly referring to Luther.»

According to Michael, just about every anti-Jewish book printed in the Third Reich contained references to and quotations from Luther.

Fascism, Nazi, Swastika, Symbol, Germany
Picture: Books printed in the Third Reich contained references to and quotations from Martin Luther

The leading member of the Nazi Party of Germany, Heinrich Himmler was one of the most powerful men in Nazi Germany and a main architect of the Holocaust. He formed the Einsatzgruppen and built extermination camps.

Himmler directed the killing of some six million Jews, between 200,000 and 500,000 Romani people, and other victims. The total number of civilians killed by the Nazi regime is estimated at eleven to fourteen million people Most of them Polish and Soviet citizens.

Heinrich Himmler (albeit never a Lutheran, having been brought up Catholic) wrote admiringly of his writing and sermons on the Jews in 1940. Professor Richard Geary noted, based on his research, that the Nazi Party received disproportionately more votes from Protestants than Catholic areas of Germany.

Chruch historian Martin Brecht said; «There is a world of difference between his belief in salvation and a racial ideology. Neverthless, his misguided agitation had the evil result that Luther fatefully became one of the «church fathers» of anti-semitism and thus provided material for the modern hatred of the Jews, cloaking it with the authority of the Reformer.»

Luther saw the Turks as a scourgge sent by God to punish Christians, as agents of the Biblical apocalypse that would destroy the Antichrist, whom Luther believed to be the papacy, and the Roman Church.

He went on to produce several critical pamphlets on Islam, which he called «Mohammedanism» or «the Turk». Though Luther saw the Muslim faith as a tool of the devil, he was indifferent to its practice: «Let the Turk believe and live as he will, just as one lets the papacy and others false Christians live».

Henry VIII broke England`s ties with the Pope and the Roman Catholic Church hundreds of year ago and said goodbye. Church taxes were paid straight to Rome, but not anymore. The Pope had the final word in the appointment of bishops, but that also came to an end. So is it today. The UK will no longer pay to the EU, and the EU has nothing they can say.

But they didn`t say goodbye to Europe, and so is it today. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the United Kingdom is leaving the club European Union, but they are still a part of Europe.

The UK isn`t leaving Europe but a trading club that provides several non-rival but excludable goods to its members. Now, they want free trade and to be a member of another club like EU. We can assume the United States is on top of that list.

This is the end of the relationship with EU, but it is also the beginning of a new era for those who are building Europe. The UK is leaving the EU because EU is the problem. Not the UK. Therefore, the European Union must change.

The old European model is dead. So is the globalisation as we know it. It`s tragic for those in charge of building Europe not to see that this is a great opportunity to build a new one.

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