Religious And Cultural Effects Of The Black Death

Improved Essays
The Black Death (also called the plague) hit Europe, almost all things, mostly the daily elements of life, were under the influence of the Roman Catholic Church. During this time, almost every action one would make would require prayer. The church had always told the people right from wrong. The church and followers believed that the afterlife was more important than ones present life. It was a must to be given the last rights and to confess ones sins before dying to be sure of a peaceful afterlife. (Constitutional Rights Foundation) When the plague first hit, many people believed the plague was a punishment from God. (Cultural Effects of the Black Plague) Because of this, the people normally turned to the church for help and answers. None …show more content…
Some members turned away from the church, because the church had always been powerful and always had a solution to a problem. The church could not offer any help at the time of this enormous crisis. (The Church and the Black Death) The living lost all sense of justice and morality. The church, in return, received a bad name, because the holy officials could not actually cure people from this awful disease. Medieval people could find no divine reason for this nightmare and this dissatisfaction with the church increased incentive to reform movements and eventually broke apart the unity of the Roman Catholic Church. Most of the clergy members that had not left their posts in the church sooner or later contracted the deadly disease when taking care of a victim. Several accounts show that most priests, friars, and nuns gave their lives in faithful religious service. (The Black Death and Religious Impact) With fewer priests, but more deaths, Pope Clement VI was compelled to grant a remission of sins to all who have died of the plague. (The Church and the Black Death) Since most members of the clergy passed away from the plague, ill-prepared, uneducated, and unsuitable candidates for the church’s …show more content…
However, with the extreme loss of life there was an accumulation of goods, a decrease in their price, a surplus of jobs and consequently a rise in wages. The standard of living actually increased. Also the need for paid workers resulted in movement away from feudalism and the development of a working class. All of these events paved the way for the coming Renaissance. Even though the Black Plague changed the world forever and is one of the most horrifying epidemics in world history, it was not all bad for the Roman Catholic Church, which is what most people believe was hit the hardest. The Black Death was economically beneficial to the Roman Catholic Church! As well as other employers and survivors of the plague. The employers lost so many workers that they were willing to pay more and the survivors looking for work were in luck. In the years that followed the plague, the quality of the clergy intensely diminished as a result of high death rates, especially for many of the more devout churchmen. Many of the new priests being added on after the epidemic were inefficiently trained, or were more absorbed in making money than serving their community. All this made many dissatisfied with the church as an establishment and directed many to question the need for clerics. Church revolutionists began to grow and sooner or later ideas that gained power and a broadening audience in the plague

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    Rapidly, the Church began to suffer. Before the plague, the Church had thousands of followers,and when the plague started, the people strayed from the Church and blamed them for the plague,and since the church had no explanation for the outrage, so the people were infuriated. The people thought of the Church as omniscient, so when the priests and bishops could not give them the answers they wanted, the Church began losing spiritual authority over its…

    • 1274 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The church lost a lot of people, and its political and social power was greatly weakened, but the church became richer through acts of giving. Less educated priests, kings, and queens were given the roles to perform sacraments. The kings and priests who were more educated died from the plague, or ran away to different countries, so there were fewer kings and queens to take care of the land of Florence, as most of them were even afraid because they thought they would also die from the plague. Churches at that time became extremely busy, trying to donate to people who were affected by the plague. Unfortunately, they were not able to reach all of the victims due to being so busy with others.…

    • 1022 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Causes Of The Black Death

    • 1007 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Most clergy fled and those who stayed usually contracted the disease themselves. Pope Clement VI allowed people to confess to one another, regardless of gender, and granted remission of sins to all those who died of the plague. Those who died didn’t receive a proper funeral and bodies were thrown in mass graves. The decrease of belief in churches was caused by the lack of trust in them and failing to help the…

    • 1007 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Since the war was very destructive, many homes, farms, and churches had to be rebuilt, but at this point most of the countries were already in great debt because of the war, so they rose taxes, making the life of the working class even harder. People started changing the views on war and felt that the Central Powers were responsible for causing all the damage. But the Central Powers were surprised because they believed the war was not their fault and that the war was stopped because neither side thought it was necessary to keep fighting. Governments were also falling apart because of the financial crisis which resulted in political radicals rising, wanting to create a new government. Eventually when the Treaty of Versailles was signed, the Germans had to take full blame for the war, pay the costs of damage caused in war, limit…

    • 2087 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Prior to The Renaissance the Catholic church was the center of the peoples lives. It was where the people drew there strength and where they turned in times of need as well as for guidance on all matters of life. It is for this reason that when the catastrophe that was The Black Death befell the people, they turned toward the church for savior. There prays and pleading seemed to go unanswered by their church and there god. The church could do little to prevent the backlash from the people, they were just as likely to fall to the illness as anyone, leading many to see the church as being no better than any other.…

    • 1069 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    When the plague grew stronger and struck thousands of people the faith in god for some people was gone. People felt that god didn’t exist because of his failure to answer their prayers in time of need. Courie, Leonard W. discusses how faith in religion decreased after the plague because of the deaths of so many clergy and the failure to answer prayers to prevent sickness and death (Doc 6). Not only were these the factors that lead people not to believe in god, but it was also why they lost faith in him. The plague caused people to change their religious views which effected a lot of people in medieval…

    • 506 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    This epidemic killed almost entire populations in the Western civilization. The disease did not hold back on anyone, it killed the young, old, and the weak mostly because they were not able to fight against the disease at all. The Black Death impacted laborers, bankers, travelers, priests, doctors, etc. The disease caused a major shortage of laborers, which cause a social impact on the civilizations that were affected. People abandoned their homes and family and friends in order to try and escape the Black Death, but anyone who couldn’t escape was most likely killed from the disease.…

    • 932 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    How do the opinions of people not following any vocation fit into this two-sided problem? From a clear faith standpoint, there shouldn’t be any excuses or alternate views. However the world is not perfect, and neither is all our faith. For some time now, exactly how long isn’t clear, mainly the last century, the Catholic Church has seen a steadily increasing decrease {steady decrease} in the {their} community. There are many things to blame (to some degree) for this, from technological advancements, to the social media up rise, even to some mass world events.…

    • 1027 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Causes of the Protestant Reformation The causes of the Protestant Reformation were, the selling of Indulgences, the bible only being read in Latin, and the rich being able to buy high church positions. People after having to go through this their entire life were finally fed up and broke apart from the church which in turn caused multiple wars and millions of people to lose their lives. The church in the 16th century was in dire need of money to complete some of their projects. So they sold what's called an indulgence. This gave people forgiveness of their sins for a price.…

    • 547 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The quote is about how the price doubled or more for everything that you bought during and after the plague. This definitely affected the the people since business flourished while the wealthy lords and nobles lost money. A law that King Edward III made in 1351 after the black plague, was that peasants could not make any more than they did before the outbreak. This lead peasant to become much poorer and start uprise later on, and this made the lords and nobles happy because they did not have to spend that much money on the staff. King Edward made this law because he realized the peasants were making money and the wealthy were losing money which he did not like.…

    • 1112 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays

Related Topics