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Oxford Movement

Their influences were felt in the spiritual and doctrinal levels.1
The Oxford movement brought to the forefront some of the problems within the Church of England. One of the major forces that caused the movement occurred in the year 1832 where there was the passage of the Reform Act. This Act required that ten Irish bishops be eliminated from the Church. One of the major participants of the movement was John Keble. He voiced his objections against that reform and even described it as a form of apostasy by the nation. He voiced these complaints in a Sermon at Oxford during the year 1833.
The leaders of the Oxford movement felt that adherents to the Anglican faith were not as devoted as they should be to the church and the clergy. Standards of worship had declined and something needed to be done in order to change this. They also felt that tradition no longer formed a central part of worship and there was a need to return to that.
The movement protested against involvement of the government in matters of the Church. This was highlighted in the famous sermon of 1833. Newman asserted that the church was a holy institution and as such should be left to run its own affairs without interruptions from external bodies. He also spoke against the way the government had ruined the apostolic succession principle which required that bishops should be succeeded in a religious and not a political manner.2
Lead
Leaders of the movement were also instrumental in making the people of England realise that there were certain linkages between the Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church. These beliefs caused the formulation of the Branch Theory in which The Orthodox, Anglicans and Roman Catholics were termed as branches of the real Catholic Church. These movement's leaders compared some elements of the Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church to prove the latter fact. They asserted that the 39 articles of their church and the Council of Trent were one and the same thing. This latter issue was propagated by Newman. The leaders of the Movement introduced the idea that the Church of England was less of a Protestant Church and more of a Roman Catholic Church. These arguments were further emphasised by the fact that the Church of England still had succession practices of priests and bishops that were quite similar to those ones in the Catholic faith. They also highlighted the fact that most of them still adhered to the Catholic sacraments. These teachings were given in a series of articles called Tracts hence the name Tractarianism. 3

The main belief behind the Tractarian movement (as it was later known) was the fact that the True and Holy Catholic Church was a real body that was bound together by spiritual unity. They were however quick to point out that the Catholic Church had been divided into various sections. Their ideas were based on the premise that there was a sort of continuity between the ancient Catholic Church and the Church of England. They asserted that the connection between the latter two faiths was not something that could be easily broken with time. There was also more emphasis on the role played ...Show more

Summary

The Oxford movement was a religious movement that occurred between the years 1833-1845 by clergymen from the Church of England. This was done as an effort to stimulate the Church of England through certain Catholic rituals and doctrines. They came from a college located in Oxford hence the name of the movement…
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