Decline of Church Power

By: Lauren Onstott & Mary Kate

Church's Decline


1.In the fourteen century a series of problems led to the decline of the church's political position.


2.The great schism lasted from 1378-1417. which divided Europe. France and allies supported the pope in Avignon. England and England's allies supported the pope in Rome.


3.European kings had grown unwilling to accept papal claims of supremacy by the end of he thirteenth century. Which was a struggle between Pope Boniface VII and King Philip IV of France.


4.Philip - he had the right to tax the clergy. Boniface- claimed that the clergy could not pay taxes to their ruler without popes consent.


5.Boniface- said that popes were supreme over both the church and the state


6.Philip refused to accept the popes position and sent French forces to Italy to bring back Boniface for trail in France. He escaped but died soon because of shock his experience.


7.To keep his position Philip made Clement V the pope in 1305.


8.The college of cardinals met to elect a new pope after Pope Gregory XI died. They were not allowed to leave Rome unless and Italian Pope was elected. They were scared so they elected an Italians pope named Urban VI.


9.Five months later they called back the election and made a Frenchman pope.


10.Because urban stayed in Rome and the other pope went to Avigon. There were 2 popes


11.The great schism greatly damaged the church.


12.Both popes acused each other of not believing in Christ. The people faith in the papacy and the church were undermined.


Extra Facts

1.Often in the later Middle Ages, the pope would simply have political, and not religious, reasons for interfering in a battle.

2.The pride of the popes had also, for almost the entire period, been criticized by small religious orders who objected to the wealth, power, and homage which the papacy had collected over the years.

3.It was the church's tendency to use its power frivolously which helped usher in the major element which began its fall.