The Protestants Reformation

Timeline created by _theafrancesca_
In History
  • 1200

    The Selling of Indulgences

    The Catholic Church sold indulgences (forgiveness for someone’s sins). The Pope believed that some parts of the Bible gave the Catholic Church permission to sell indulgences.
  • 1347

    The Black Death

    The Bubonic Plague killed 1/3 of Europe’s population. The Catholic Church and its priests told people to pray and stop sinning to prevent the disease, but that didn’t work. Some people lost faith in the Catholic Church as the way to make God happy.
  • 1500

    Absuses of Indulgences

    Some people thought that they could pay others to execute their indulgences for them.
    Some priests and bishops gave excessive indulgences.
    Some religious brothers and sisters lied about have authority by the Pope to forgive all sins.
  • 1506

    St Peter's Basillica

    Pope Leo X granted an indulgence for contributions towards the building of the new St Peter's Basilica at Rome. The sale of indulgences to build the new St Peter's Basilica in Rome gave Martin Luther the opportunity to attack indulgences in general, and this attack was the immediate cause of the Reformation in Germany.
  • 1511

    Martin Luther was sent to the University of Wittenberg

    Martin studied theology and lectured on the Bible. This led him to reflect deeply on the words of Scripture. He struggled at this time with questions of sinfulness and salvation.
  • 1517

    The 95 Theses

    Luther circulated his 95 Theses, which were posted on the door of the Wittenberg Castle church. The document contained an attack on papal abuses and the sale of indulgences by church officials.
  • 1518

    Pope Leo's Statement against the 95 Theses

    When Luther refused to take back his attack, Pope Leo X issued a statement outlining the Church's doctrine on indulgences, and condemning Luther's ideas.
  • 1519

    Luther's Response

    Luther wrote to Pope Leo X, stating that it was not his intention to question the authority of the Pope or the Church. The impact of the Luther-Rome dispute began to grow.
  • 1519

    Spreading through Switzerland

    Zwingli, who had been a powerful priest in the Catholic Church and had joined Luther's reform program in 1519, brought Protestantism to Zurich from where it spread through Switzerland.
  • 1520

    Luther getting more support

    By t)iis time Luther had the support of many of the German nobility. Pope Leo X gave him 60 days to recant or face excommunication. As his books were being burned in cities throughout Germany, Luther published an open letter to Pope Leo X, apologising to the Pope personally, but continuing to denounce what he saw as false doctrine and corruption in the Church.
  • 1521

    The Arrest and Escape of Martin Luther

    Luther was excommunicated, and summoned to the city of Worms to appear before a hearing at which he still refused to take back his attack on the Church. On his way back to Wittenberg; he was captured by supporters disguised as bandits and taken to safety in Wartburg castle.
  • 1522

    The Spread of the Lutheran church

    The next two years saw Luther preaching throughout central Germany.
  • 1524

    The Banishment of Luther

    Luther was banished by the church and the Emperor but by this time he had great popular support. By now, certain groups without Luther's agreement, were using his ideas as a reason for revolution. Luther left his religious order and married, continuing his writing and denouncing the groups that were using his ideas as an excuse for criminal acts.
  • 1530

    The Augsburg Confession

    Many German princes and cities signed a document called the Augsburg Confession as an expression of the new Protestant faith.
  • 1534

    The Rise of Anglicans

    In England, King Henry VIII also split from Rome. He appointed a secret Protestant, Thomas Cranmer, as Archbishop of Canterbury, and made himself head of the Church in England. Henry VIII was highly critical of Martin Luther but his son, Edward VI, introduced Protestant doctrines and Protestant forms of worship. Anglicanism is thus a blend of Protestant and Catholic practices and beliefs. Today, many Anglicans do not think of themselves as Protestants.
  • 1536

    The Wave in France

    John Calvin, in Geneva, drew on Luther and Zwingli and preached a stern and demanding God, emphasising the doctrine of predestination. He was the leading French Protestant Reformer and the most important figure in the next wave of the Protestant Reformation.
  • 1546

    The Death of Luther

    Luther died aged 62.
  • 1546

    Spreading through Scotland

    John Knox brought Calvin's Reformed Church to Scotland, where it became the Presbyterian Church.
  • 1555

    Widespread of the Luther Church

    Each German prince was given the right to choose the religion of his own territory. As a result, the Reformation swept through Northern and Eastern Europe.