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Report on Religious Field Research - Term Paper Example

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Report on Religious Field Research

(Jungman, 2012) During the first 280 years in Christian history, Christianity was ruled out in the Roman Empire and Christians were heavily persecuted. This arbitrary changed after the “conversion” of the Roman Emperor Constantine. He allowed Christians to worship and made Christianity legal with the Milan’s Edicit in A.D 313. In A.D 325, Constantine summoned the council of Nicaea in an attempt popularize Christianity. Constantine postulated that Christianity would unite the Roman Empire which at that time was fragmenting gradually. This generated positive results towards the development of Christianity at the time. (Jungman, 2012) However Constantine did not fully accept Christianity, instead he mixed some Roman pagan beliefs which are still intact up to date. The impetuous behind Constantine’s action of blending Christianity and Roman paganism was that Christian was a foreign religion and Romans could not have just left their religion and embrace a foreign one fully. Some of the Christianized beliefs include: (i) Cult of Isis was a mother –goddess from Egyptian religion. It was absorbed and harmonized with Christianity and it was replaced by the Virgin Mary. Many titles that were meant for Isis were attached to Mary, i.e., “Queen of Heaven”, “Mother of God”, theotokas (“God –bearer”) among other adoration names. Mary was given supreme positions as the roles far much ahead than the bible ascribes to her. This was done in order to attract the Isis worshippers to Christianity. Failure to do this, any efforts would lead to frustration. (George, 2009) (ii) Mithraism was a renowned religion in the Roman Empire which was practiced in the 5th century A.D .It was popular among the Roman soldiers sand also the Roman Emperors. Mithraism lacked the “official “status in the Roman Empire, it was accepted as the de facto official religion not until the Roman Emperors replaced Mithraism with Christianity. The key aspects of Mithraism was sacrificial meal (theophagy, eating ones god), sacraments among other conspicuous features. Constantine and the successors found it easy to substitute Mithraism with the Lords supper /Holy Communion which unfortunately prompted some early Christians to attach mysticism to the lords supper, rejecting the biblical idea of remembrance worship and meditation of Christ’s sacrificial death and the blood He shed. (Charles, 1982) (iii) Henoticism is a distinguishing feature of roman pagan religion. It involves believing in the existence of many gods but focuses primarily on one particular god which is considered to be the most superior god. For instance, Jupiter was the supreme Roman god. The Roman sailors normally worshipped Neptune, which was the god of the oceans. Christianization of Roman paganism involved the replacing of Roman gods with saints just as the Roman chain of gods had a god of love, god of peace, god of war, god of strength among other gods which were claimed to exist(Charles, 1982.) The “Papacy” that exists in the hierarchy of Catholic Church is a continuation of what was created by the Roman Emperors, ...Show more

Summary

Roman Catholic Religion Institution Name Roman Catholic Religion Roman Catholic Church extends its origin from the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It’s a Christian denomination which is heavily influenced by the roman traditions .Roman Catholic Church defends that it’s the church that Jesus Christ died for and the church that the apostles established…
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