CHAPTER 5 Light In The Dark Ages Throughout all of the insecurity, one institution remained firm: the Church. Amid the darkness, the Church held up the powerful light of Christ. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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CHAPTER 5 Light In The Dark Ages Throughout all of the insecurity, one institution remained firm: the Church. Amid the darkness, the Church held up the powerful light of Christ.

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Title: CHAPTER 5 Light In The Dark Ages Throughout all of the insecurity, one institution remained firm: the Church. Amid the darkness, the Church held up the powerful light of Christ.


1
CHAPTER 5Light In The Dark AgesThroughout
all of the insecurity, one institution remained
firm the Church. Amid the darkness, the Church
held up the powerful light of Christ.
2
CHAPTER 5Light In The Dark Ages
  • The collapse of the Roman Empire during the fifth
    century inaugurated a period of decline in the
    West.
  • Although insecurity and confusion reigned, one
    institution remained firm the Church.
  • The Church continued its mission and provided
    continuity.
  • This Chapter looks at the fall of the Roman
    Empire, the rise and importance of monasticism,
    and the rise of Islam.

3
PART IThe Collapse of the Roman Empire
  • The fall of the Roman Empire led to a crisis in
    the Church.
  • It now had to disassociate itself from an Empire
    that it had assumed would last forever.
  • Throughout the decline of the empire and the rise
    of monasticism, the Holy Spirit strengthened the
    Church for a new wave of evangelizing activity
    among the Germanic Tribes.
  • By the eleventh century, Christianity had spread
    to virtually all parts of the European continent.

4
THE FALL OF ROME (476)
  • Although there is not an exact date for the fall
    of the Roman Empire, at some time during the
    fifth century the West collapsed.
  • In AD 410, Alaric, the king of the Visigoths,
    sacked Rome, and, in AD 476, the last western
    emperor was overthrown.
  • The moral situation was grim as the invading
    barbaric tribes injected a foreign and often
    violent character into the culture.
  • The absence of academic pursuits among these
    tribes undermined the Greco-Roman tradition of
    learning and culture leading to a collapse in
    intellectual activity.

5
THE FALL OF ROME (476)
  • This affected the Church as now most people could
    no longer read the Bible.
  • Academic training was limited to priests studying
    Scripture and theology.
  • The economy declined, roads were unsafe, and
    people lived in fear and distress.
  • The empire became a rural society of isolated
    towns and villages.
  • The influence of the Church at that time was not
    sufficiently profound to impact the daily life of
    the whole population.
  • The Churchs organization was based on that of
    the Roman Empire, and the Church had to adapt
    itself to a new cultural situation.

6
THE GERMANIC TRIBES
  • The mission of the Church involves not only
    Christianizing cultures, but at the same time
    adapting itself insofar as possible to these
    cultures.
  • The Germanic tribes were the second largest
    Northern European group after the Celts.
  • The Roman Empire had never been able to conquer
    these tribes in their own territory, and so had
    settled for defending the vast boundaries of the
    empire.
  • The empire reached an agreement with many of the
    tribes along its border, and many of the Germanic
    peoples were conscripted into the army. In time,
    the Roman army itself became Germanized to such
    an extent that it was Roman in name only.

7
THE GERMANIC TRIBES
  • The Visogoths conquered the Iberian and Italian
    peninsulas.
  • The Ostrogoths later replaced the Visogoths in
    Italy.
  • The Franks settled in France and under the
    leadership of Clovis, became the first Germanic
    tribe to convert to Christianity AD 497.
  • The Alemanni settled in Germany, Switzerland, and
    Alsace.
  • The Burgundians established a capital in Worms.
  • The Lombards lived along the Elbe, Danube, and
    eventually settled in Austria and Hungary.
  • The Vandals were the most ruthless of the
    Germanic tribes, attacking Gaul and later moving
    on to Spain and Northern Africa. They were so
    fierce that the word vandal is still used in
    English today. They were also relentless
    persecutors of the Church.

8
ULPHILAS APOSTLE OF THE GOTHS
  • Ulphilas (311-388) was captured by the Goths.
  • Under the influence of an Arian bishop he
    translated the Bible into Gothic and was later
    made a bishop himself.
  • Due to his missionary efforts, the Goths,
    Burgundians, Lombards, and Vandals were converted
    to Arian Christianity.

9
THE HUNS
  • The Huns, a powerful nomadic people, swept from
    northern China to the Volga valley in the fifth
    century.
  • They soon established themselves in the eastern
    empire, exacting tribute from the emperor, and by
    AD 451 they had invaded Gaul and were threatening
    the heart of the Western Empire.
  • They did not settle down to build houses or
    farms, and acquired a reputation as a fierce and
    ruthless people who devastated much of Europe.

10
ATTILA THE HUN MEETS POPE ST. LEO THE GREAT (452)
  • Attila (d. 453), The Scourge of God,
    successfully united the Huns under one rule.
  • He was a brave warrior, a skilled diplomat, and a
    skilled military strategist.
  • Earlier in his life he had been held a hostage in
    Rome where he learned Latin and discovered Romes
    weaknesses.
  • He engaged the Romans and invaded Gaul, which he
    devastated.
  • Finally, in AD 451, an allied Visogothic/Roman
    army defeated him and forced him back across the
    Rhine.

11
ATTILA THE HUN MEETS POPE ST. LEO THE GREAT (452)
  • Defeated in Gaul he turned toward Italy attacking
    the towns in the North.
  • As he drew close to Rome, Pope St. Leo the Great
    went to meet him.
  • Attila is said to have met a procession of
    priests, deacons, and acolytes singing hymns and
    psalms, followed by an old man sitting on a
    horse. When Attila asked his name the old man
    replied, Leo the Pope. No one knows what Pope
    St. Leo said to Attila, but Attila did not attack
    Rome and withdrew entirely from Italy.
  • Pope St. Leo was not able to repeat the same
    success in AD 455 but was at least able to
    convince the leader of the Vandals, Genseric, not
    to burn Rome, and to spare the lives of the
    people.

12
HISTORICAL INTERPRETATION OF THE GERMANIC
INVASIONS
  • Over time the Church developed several concrete
    ideas concerning the Germanic invasions
  • First, the Church recognized that Christianity
    was universal and needed to be communicated to
    the Germanic Tribes.
  • The Church had adopted the governmental
    structures, customs, language, and laws of the
    Roman Empire, but now had to adapt to civilizing
    and evangelizing the Germanic Tribes. The
    Germanic peoples were not philosophical, nor
    theological, and placed less emphasis on order,
    culture, organization, and law. Much of what the
    Church had learned and developed had to be
    radically altered in order to work with the
    Germanic peoples without altering the essential
    doctrines of Christianity.
  • Through monasticism, which had established itself
    firmly by the end of the fifth century, the
    Church gained access to these people.

13
THE CHRISTIAN ATTITUDE TOWARD THE INVASIONS
  • Initially, the Christians were discouraged with
    the fall of the Roman Empire.
  • Many thought that the Second Coming of Christ was
    imminent.
  • Others saw the Fall of the Empire as a punishment
    for the sins of the Romans. They pointed to the
    moral degradations of the Roman Empire, not to
    mention that of many Christians.
  • Many left the moral deteriorations of the cities
    for a life of asceticism expressed in the
    evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity, and
    obedience.
  • This radical separation from the world for the
    sake of Christs kingdom through prayer and
    penance characterized monasticism.

14
PART II The Rise of MonasticismThe First
Appearance of Monasticism
  • Monasticism is a way of life characterized by
    prayer and self-denial lived in seclusion from
    the world and under a fixed rule with professed
    vows.
  • Christian monasticism is unique in that one seeks
    to model oneself on Christ by complete dedication
    to a life of prayer and penance.
  • There are two types of monastic life
  • The eremetical, or hermit life, involves loosely
    organized groups living an ascetical life. The
    word hermit comes from the Greek meaning
    desert.
  • The second type, and more common form, is the
    cenobitical, or common life that is monastic
    life lived in a community.

15
PART II The Rise of MonasticismThe First
Appearance of Monasticism
  • While St. Paul of Thebes is considered to be the
    first hermit, St. Anthony indirectly influenced
    Western Monasticism through his impact on St.
    Athanasius, who wrote his biography. When St.
    Athanasius brought this book to Rome, it served
    as a handbook for Western Monasticism.
  • Two monastic orders, the Carthusians and
    Carmelites, have taken much inspiration from the
    eremetical life.
  • St. Pachomius (290-346) founded cenobitical
    monasticism in Egypt. Desiring to withdraw from
    the world he sought solitude in the desert, but
    as more people heard about his life of holiness,
    they sought him out to ask for his prayer and
    guidance. He allowed many to join him and wrote
    an early form of monastic rule. His rule
    influenced St. Basil the Great, St. John Cassian,
    and St. Benedict in their establishment of
    monastic orders.

16
MONASTICISM AND THE EMERGENCE OF A NEW CHRISTIAN
CULTURE
  • The rise of monasticism proved vital for the
    spread of Christianity in three ways
  • They were a source of great spiritual strength
  • They served as seminaries for priests and
    bishops
  • They functioned as centers of evangelization for
    the barbarian tribes.
  • As Europe became more agrarian, monastic
    communities spread into these areas to provide
    for the spiritual needs of the people.
  • They helped establish new farmlands and farming
    communities.

17
MONASTICISM AND THE EMERGENCE OF A NEW CHRISTIAN
CULTURE
  • The monasteries became the chief centers of
    learning until the rise of the universities.
  • They copied and retained the literary works of
    the Greco-Roman world.
  • Benedictine monasteries had a scriptoria set
    aside for copying texts. These monasteries
    single-handedly saved Western Culture during this
    period.
  • Another effect was that of civilization. The
    Germanic tribes were attracted by their goodness
    and holiness and came to learn trades such as
    agriculture, carpentry, stone masonry, and
    ironwork. The monks also taught the people how
    to read and write, elevating the people
    intellectually.

18
ST. BENEDICT THE PATRIARCH OF WESTERN
MONASTICISM
  • St. Benedict left Rome withdrawing to a cave in
    Subiaco to live the life of a hermit.
  • As word of his sanctity grew, others joined him.
  • Eventually he went on to found twelve monasteries
    and placed a superior in each one.
  • He began his thirteenth monastery at Monte
    Cassino AD 529.
  • While there he composed his rule, now known as
    the Rule of St. Benedict.

19
ST. BENEDICT THE PATRIARCH OF WESTERN
MONASTICISM
  • His rule has been praised for its spirit of love
    and peace, as well as its moderation in the
    ascetical life. For example, his monks were to
    sleep between 6-8 hours each night, and were to
    have a bed, a pillow, and sufficient food. This
    is in contrast to Egyptian monasticism where a
    strict ascetical life included sleep deprivation
    and little food.
  • The monastic life was to be lived in common, as a
    family and self-sustaining community. Each had
    different tasks, working for the good of the
    whole. No one was to have personal property,
    although the monastery might.
  • Physical labor and prayer was a part of their
    daily routine.
  • After their novitiate, the monks would profess
    vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience.

20
THE RULE OF ST. BENEDICT
  • The rule divided the day into two parts prayer
    and work. The chief aim was to give praise and
    glory to God.
  • The habitual prayer in common was called the opus
    Dei (work of God) or laus Dei (praise of God).
  • Prayer in common was divided among eight periods
    in the day
  • Vigils/Matins (12 midnight)
  • Lauds (6 am)
  • Prime (7 am)
  • Terce (9 am)
  • Sext (12 noon)
  • None (3 pm)
  • Vespers (6 pm)
  • Compline (9 pm)
  • This Schedule of prayer has its roots in Holy
    Scripture At midnight I rise to praise thee,
    and Seven times a day I praise thee. (Ps
    119118). This practice is now known as the
    Liturgy of the Hours or the Divine Office.

21
ST. SCHOLASTICA
  • St. Scholastica was St. Benedicts twin sister.
  • She established and governed a convent for nuns
    following the Benedictine rule.
  • Not allowed to visit each others home, they
    would meet in another home once a year to discuss
    spiritual matters and to pray.

22
POPE ST. GREGORY THE GREAT
  • St. Gregory (540-604) became Pope AD 590.
  • A Church Father, he is considered the last of the
    traditional Latin Doctors.
  • His papacy is often used as a marker for the
    beginning of the Medieval Age.
  • Beginning with a career in the civic affairs of
    Rome, he eventually sold all of his property to
    found seven monasteries and to alleviate the
    plight of the poor.
  • This was a common practice among Roman nobility,
    and later became an example in the Middle Ages.
  • One of these monasteries was in Rome where he
    became a monk.
  • After several years, the Pope made him one of the
    seven deacons of Rome, and in 579 Pope Pelagius
    II appointed him as papal nuncio.

23
POPE ST. GREGORY THE GREAT
  • Upon the Popes death, the Roman people
    universally acclaimed him as the new Pope.
    Initially, he fled the city, but after much
    prayer he accepted and became Pope.
  • He wrote many treatises on Sacred Scripture, many
    of which survive, along with more than 800
    letters.
  • He took the title the servant of the servants of
    God.
  • He helped to establish plainsong chant in the
    liturgical life of the Church, which is now known
    as Gregorian Chant.
  • When faced with an impending Lombard invasion,
    coupled with the Eastern emperors inactivity,
    Pope St. Gregory negotiated a series of peace
    treaties.

24
POPE ST. GREGORY THE GREAT
  • These activities demonstrated the growing
    temporal power of the Pope, along with a growing
    rejection of the Eastern emperors political
    power in the West.
  • St. Gregory is also known for his missionary
    activities. Through his efforts, the Saxons in
    England and the Lombards were converted to
    Christianity.
  • His missionary success, along with the support of
    the poor, won for St. Gregory the title the
    Great.

25
PART III The Rise of Islam
  • Islam joined Christianity and Judaism as the
    third of the great monotheistic religions.
  • Beginning with the Arab peoples, it quickly
    spread as the Islamic invaders conquered lands in
    Asia, Africa, and Europe.
  • Its spread has a profound impact on the Church,
    and its rapid spread threatened the very
    existence of Christianity.

26
ARABIA
  • When Islam appeared the Arabian Peninsula was
    sparsely populated by Bedouin tribes, who were in
    a state of constant warfare.
  • The Arabs were pagans who worshipped objects of
    nature. One object in particular, the Kaaba, a
    large black stone in Mecca, commanded a large
    following.
  • It supposedly marked the spot where Abraham
    worshipped the one true God, and was considered
    the turning point of the world, a connection
    between Heaven and Earth.
  • In the person of Muhammed, the Jewish, Christian,
    and pagan traditions were woven into a uniquely
    new Arabic religion called Islam.

27
MUHAMMAD (CA. 570-632) AND THE KORAN
  • Muhammad was born near Mecca. An orphan at age
    six, he was given an upbringing by his uncle. He
    worked as a camel driver until he married a
    wealthy, widowed woman. He had six children, all
    of whom died except his daughter Fatima.
  • At one point Muhammad decided to withdraw from
    the world to pursue a life of prayer. In 612, he
    announced that he had had a vision of the
    Archangel Gabriel who called him to be a herald
    of Allah, the Jewish God. This message resulted
    in the Koran (Arabic for recitation).

28
MUHAMMAD (CA. 570-632) AND THE KORAN
  • Because Arabic was the language of revelation, it
    is considered the only true language in which to
    read the Koran. Although translations are made,
    Muslims are encouraged to learn Arabic, and the
    memorization of the Koran is a goal of Muslims.
  • The Koran is considered by Muslims to be Gods
    word, perfect and eternal.

29
ISLAMS BIBLICAL REINTERPRETATION
  • Islam traces itself back to Abraham, Hagar, and
    Ishmael, who is the Father of the Arabic people.
  • Islam (Arabic for submission) recognizes Jewish
    prophets and Christian writings, but teaches that
    both Jews and Christians have misunderstood the
    word of God.
  • Islam reinterpreted the Jewish and Christian
    narratives.
  • Jesus and Mary are both respected in Islam, but
    only as a prophet and his holy mother.
  • Islam holds that Gods Revelation culminated, not
    in Jesus, but in Muhammads visions as recorded
    in the Koran.
  • Muhammad is Gods last prophet who brought the
    world the perfect religion.

30
PEOPLE OF THE BOOK
  • The Koran teaches that Jews and Christians are
    People of the Book in that they share with
    Islam a monotheistic tradition and a common
    religious history.
  • The key beliefs of Christianity, such as the
    Incarnation, redemption, the atonement of the
    Cross, the Resurrection, and the Trinity, are
    denied by Islam.
  • At first Christianity was tolerated by Islam, but
    later tensions mounted.
  • Jews and Christians were forced to pay a special
    tax in order to practice their own religion.
  • This financial burden, along with the difficulty
    of living in a Muslim state, eventually coerced
    many Jews and Christians to convert to Islam.

31
MUHAMMADS PREACHING
  • Muhammad taught monotheism, the immortality of
    the soul, the resurrection of the body, justice
    to the poor, and a sensual paradise in the next
    life.
  • This teaching upset the populace in Mecca, and
    Mohammad was forced to flee the city.
  • He went with his followers to Medina on Friday,
    July 16, 622. This emigration is known as the
    hejira (Arabic for flight), and it marks the
    Year 1 on the Muslim calendar.

32
IN MEDINA ISLAM MATURES
  • In Medina, Muhammad was hailed as a religious
    leader, and he was invited to be the new leader
    of Medina.
  • From the beginning there was never any separation
    between civil powers and religious authority.
  • In Medina, Muhammad also became the head of the
    military, which he used to expand Islam.
  • In Medina, there was a small Jewish population,
    which Muhammad demanded recognize him as a
    prophet. The Jews refused. When they appeared
    to have supported Mecca in a later confrontation
    with Muhammad, he had the men slaughtered and the
    women and children sold into slavery.

33
IN MEDINA ISLAM MATURES
  • After a new inspiration, the direction of prayer
    was changed from Jerusalem to Mecca.
  • In 624, Muhammad led a jihad (holy war) against
    Mecca and defeated their forces.
  • Muhammad took control of Mecca and purged all
    pagan religions.
  • The Kaaba became a focus of pilgrimage, which
    every Muslim is required to make once in their
    life if they are able.

34
THE FIVE PILLARS OF ISLAM
  • The Five Pillars of Islam are requirements for
    all Muslims.
  • (1) Shahada The Creedal statement of Islam.
    There is no god but God (Allah) and Muhammad
    is his prophet.
  • (2) Prayer Prayer is required five times daily
    in the direction of Mecca.
  • (3) The Hajj Every Muslim is required to make
    a pilgrimage to Mecca once in their lifetime if
    possible.
  • (4) Ramadan A strict fast from sunrise to
    sunset is required during the holy month of
    Ramadan.
  • (5) Zakah Muslims are asked to give alms based
    on a percentage of their wealth.

35
THE MORAL CODE OF ISLAM
  • In addition to the five pillars, there is a
    strict moral code.
  • Muslims borrowed dietary prohibitions from the
    Judaism, which included pork and the kosher
    preparation of meat products.
  • Idolatry is strictly forbidden and Islamic art
    does not depict Allah or any human person, rather
    it has developed complex and beautiful geometric
    shapes and architecture.
  • Apostasy and adultery are forbidden.
  • Polygamy is permitted, though a man may have no
    more than four wives.

36
JIHAD
  • Jihad is Muslim holy war waged in the name of
    religion against infidels. Those who die fighting
    in a jihad go straight to Heaven where swords
    provide shade and the man is met with a limitless
    number of virgins. The idea of jihad is
    intricately linked with the spread of Islam,
    which has prompted its labeling as a sixth
    pillar.
  • The Arabs were united under jihad, and
    Christianity became one of its primary targets.

37
THE SPLIT IN ISLAMSUNNI VERSUS SHIITE
  • After Muhammads death his followers disagreed
    over questions of succession and political
    leadership in the Muslim community.
  • The Shiite party (Islams largest non-Sunni sect)
    claimed that Ali, the son-in-law and cousin of
    Muhammad was the only rightful successor. It was
    based on Muhammads supposed designation of Ali
    as his successor, and the Arab tradition of
    preserving leadership through bloodline. They
    constitute 10-15 of Islam.
  • Shiites believe that an Imam, the successor of
    Muhammad, is a spiritual and temporal leader,
    divinely appointed to guide Muslims. Their
    spirituality is mystical, emphasizing suffering,
    martyrdom, and praying at the tombs of Muslim
    prophets and saints.

38
THE SPLIT IN ISLAMSUNNI VERSUS SHIITE
  • The Sunni (Arabic for tradition) party opposed
    succession based on bloodline. Sunni Muslims
    adhere to doctrines and practices based on the
    traditions of Muhammad as understood and
    interpreted by Muslim scholars. They have no
    central authority.
  • The rivalry between these two sects is evident
    even today throughout the Muslim world.

39
THE SPREAD OF ISLAM
  • Beginning in 634, the Muslims remained
    unstoppable for the next one hundred years. They
    spread to India, North Africa, and into Spain.
    The spread of Islamic territory and faith went
    hand in hand. Believers were obligated to seek
    converts and to wage war to destroy unbelievers.
    The army became the best in the world, and as the
    army expanded, Islam did as well.
  • In conquering North Africa, 600 years of
    Christianity, including its apologists, Doctors
    of the Church, and martyrs, were destroyed.

40
THE SPREAD OF ISLAM
  • In 711, most of Spain fell to the Muslims. They
    were eventually stopped by Charles Martel in the
    Battle of Tours. This served as the high water
    mark of the Muslim expansion into Europe.
  • They remained in Spain for over 700 years, until
    being expelled by Queen Isabella in 1492.

41
JERUSALEM, THE HOLY CITY
  • In 638, Muslims conquered Jerusalem. They cleared
    the Temple Mount and built the Dome of the Rock.
    Jerusalem is considered the third holiest city
    after Mecca and Medina.
  • The Muslim use of this site has caused much
    tension with the Jews in Jerusalem who today have
    only the Wailing Wall (the Western wall of the
    Temple destroyed by the Romans AD 77) remaining
    from the Temple.

42
CONCLUSION
  • Following the Fall of the Roman Empire, the
    Church made the transition from existing within
    the empire to surviving in the midst of Germanic
    invasions.
  • It not only survived, but set about the task of
    evangelizing the Germanic tribes.
  • This evangelization was greatly aided by the rise
    of Monasticism.

43
The End
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