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Catholic Church Milestones

Catholic Church Milestones is a concise, easy to read introduction to 193 of the most important people and events that have shaped the Institutional Catholic Church from its beginning to the present day. Counting over one billion members worldwide, the Catholic Church is the world's largest Christian denomination and over the course of the last two thousand years has played a significant role on the world stage.

Milestones presents the reader with both the good and not-so-good people and events in the church's history. Also included are introductions to several of the spiritual mystics who have enriched the church; and descriptions of some of the world events that played a role in moving the church to where it is today.


Milestones starts with a basic understanding that Jesus did not found a "church," rather Jesus came to teach and show the Way. His apostles and followers began small communities of believers after Jesus' Resurrection. In each of eight discrete time periods, the principle people and events are listed and discussed. Starting with the early local communities founded by the apostles, the first time period encompasses the early persecutions faced by the followers of Jesus and the transition of this new Way from a sect of the Jewish faith into a completely separate, mostly gentile religion. By the fourth century we see the dramatic change as this new belief system becomes the official religion of the Roman Empire, followed by the even more dramatic changes as the Roman Empire splits and then falters, leaving the Pope in Rome as a major player in the political life of the western part of the former Empire.

Cover Price: $16.95 / Perfectbound
ISBN: 9781608448210
180 pages

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At the beginning of the eleventh century the first major split occurs in the Catholic Church, as most of the Eastern Churches reject the leadership of the Pope and form a new "Orthodox" union that exists to this day; followed some five hundred years later by a major split in the West, as Martin Luther and other reformers call for changes in the church, which Rome soundly rejected. Instead the Catholic Church turned inward and put up further walls of separation with its counter-reformation-attitudes staunchly held for the next four hundred years, even as the world changed with: the industrial revolution; scientific breakthroughs; communism; and, then two world wars during the first half of the twentieth century. Finally we look at the changing face of the church following the Second Vatican Council.

Special Features

  • Summaries of all twenty-one ecumenical councils.
  • Thirty-one of the most notable Popes in church history are described in specific Milestones; another 64 Popes are mentioned in Milestones for various events in history. In all, over a third of the 266 Popes from Peter to Francis are mentioned.
  • Seven milestones report some of the most significant events in the history of the Church in the United States.
  • Fully indexed.