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The History of the Catholic Church: Tradition and Innovation

Length: 9 hrs and 50 mins
1 out of 5 stars (1 rating)

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Summary

Take an unforgettable journey through the entire span of the Catholic Church's existence. In this essential course, The History of the Catholic Church: Tradition and Innovation, acclaimed historian and award-winning professor Dr. Christopher Bellitto (PhD, Fordham University) breathes new life into two millennia of history.

The chronicle of Catholicism can seem daunting: full of names, dates, places, and phrases. Getting ahold of such a rich and diverse history requires guidance and a skillful approach.

In this brilliant survey course, you'll explore traditions of belief and innovate ways to describe, share, and live that faith. With Dr. Bellitto as your guide, you'll look at the major periods of church history: early, medieval, reformation, and modern. As you take this journey, you'll examine changes and continuities across the centuries.

In "Early Church", you'll see how a small group of believers spread the faith in a hostile pagan world. Then, in "Medieval Church", you'll see how popes and kings, bishops, and local lords fought to control the church as believers in the pews and plazas rediscovered the human Jesus of the Gospels. Meanwhile, religious life adapted as Christianity encountered new cultures. "Reformation Church" considers how the church recovered from its late medieval controversies and bridged the gap between science and religion. Finally, "Modern Church" explores how Vatican II has transformed Catholicism as it strides into its third millennium.

Dynamic and insightful, this course is a must-have resource. By understanding the history of the church, you will understand its fascinating past as it journeys into the future.

©2017 Now You Know Media, Inc. (P)2017 Now You Know Media, Inc.

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Very disappointing.

The bias became obvious as the lectures unfolded. If I wanted to access a theological response I would have purchased such. The words 'I feel there should be more...' has no place in a history course. The account in the crusades was very poor. Apologising for using the word 'men', tells me this chap lives in a Liberal echo chamber. Explains why the Church is failing in the West if these guys are the academics informing the youth. Stick to history please and keep your philosophy to yourself. Woeful.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • James Rush
  • 17-05-18

Quality decisions come from knowledge of the past

The quality of what we do is enhanced by evaluating what we have done. Prof. Bellitto is an astute historian who does not avoid talking about mistakes made by various Catholic leaders and organizations. He digs through the minutiae to find the up side and the down side of the high and low points in church history. Learning Church history may not seem like an exciting pursuit but as Dr. Hahn says, “there’s gold in them thar hills.” There is a substantial amount of disinformation concerning the church. Knowing the real story behind events such as the great schism, the crusades and corrupt clergy helps us calmly present the truth when we encounter half truths or false claims. Few, if any, would stand silently while someone slandered our birth Mother. Neither should we stand silently when our spiritual mother, the church, is slandered. Knowledge and truth are powerful elixirs that wash away doubt and fear!
James Rush, Catholic Faith in Focus

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  • Cheesebodia
  • 27-05-19

A Focused and Pointed History

AT A GLANCE:
A great lecturer provides an engaging yet brief look at Church history.

CONTENT:
Audio lectures are arranged chronologically from the earliest Christian centuries through to the present day. The focus is in the title; rather than endless dates, kings and events, the history of the Church is examined through the dual lenses of establishing tradition vs. the important innovations in its structure and ideas. This approach works well overall though will not be comprehensive enough for a beginner in the subject. Scholastic thought is probed with great subtlety and Prof. Bellitto clears up many misconceptions around it. Topics like the Crusades are broached with tact, while others like the Great Schism are left wanting (e.g. No, the filioque controversy was not simply a matter of semantics and opposition to authority). Vatican II is a particular highlight; after just listening to John O'Malley's treatment I was glad to see here an elegant summary of the opposing views of the council's reception.

NARRATOR:
Professor Bellitto is an accomplished academic and is worth listening to. His tone and style is accessible. He is willing to depart from the plan frequently to offer insights, which is much appreciated. He spends a good deal of time on the papacy and unflinchingly tackles how it developed as an idea and human institution. However, one novelty must be mentioned: he treats the Donation of Constantine as a 4th-century historical fact rather than a later forgery. Though he gives his reasons for this, any listener should research the issue and take this with a massive grain of salt.

OVERALL:
Recommended to those who are familiar with the subject, serving as a pass through Church history viewed as tradition and innovation.

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  • Chuan
  • 18-02-19

A very good lesson in church history

Dr. Bellitto has beautifully put this course together for all catholics and even the Protestants to appreciate and know about our church history. I cannot agree more with Dr. Bellitto that our church history has helped us with our faith formation by remembering the past and learn from these lessons. The church history in part is about revealing the Truth and to a some extend tempering with truth to know the boundaries of Truth. An institution has been built to organise ourselves and go about administering truth and since it is staffed with people we will falter. The need for forgiveness from victims of the church through and by the love of Christ is necessary for the church to move forward. Not forgiving the church’s past iniquities will be wrong, and the victims will be ourselves if we don’t forgive since the church has the divine ordination to persist. The church under different leaderships will continue to be reconciled with God through its effort to bring Gospel to the world.

This lecture has enriched my understanding of our Catholic Church profoundly and immensely. Hopefully it will for you.

Thank you Dr Bellitto.

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  • Carrie Sue Sweet
  • 08-10-18

A wonderful survey of Catholic history

This course was the perfect companion to what I am learning in RCIA. I wanted to know more about the context in which the Catholic tradition had evolved. This was a perfect introduction to the innovation and tradition of the Church.

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  • bonbonb
  • 04-08-18

Well done and so enjoyable to listen to

very well done and a joy to listen to. thank you for this book professor ballito