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Post by wangrong on Wed Dec 29, 2010 7:44 am

Following Whitby, the English church was under papal authority for nearly a thousand years, before separating from Rome in 1534 during the reign of King Henry VIII. A theological separation had been foreshadowed by various movements within the English church such as Lollardy, but the English Reformation gained political support when Henry VIII wanted an annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon so he could marry Anne Boleyn. Under pressure from Catherine's nephew, the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, Pope Clement VII refused the annulment. Eventually, Henry, although theologically a doctrinal Catholic, took the position of Supreme Head of the Church of England to ensure the annulment of his marriage. He was excommunicated by Pope Paul III.[5]

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