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Reformation Worlds

Antecedents and Legacies in the Anglican Tradition


Edited By Sean A. Otto and Thomas P. Power

A reassessment of the precedents, course, and legacy of the Reformation has occurred in the present generation of academic writing. This collection of essays brings together research by established and new scholars on themes of the Reformation with a particular focus on its antecedents and legacies in the Anglican tradition. Utilizing a diversity of topics, approaches, and methods, this book adds measurably to our knowledge of the place of the Reformation in Britain and Ireland as well as its European, North American, and African particularities.
Exploring a variety of themes, this collection examines the Reformation in relation to key aspects of church organization, belief, sacrament, conversion, relationships with other denominations, theological education, church and state, worship, and issues of resilience and decline. While these themes are pursued broadly, there is a particular focus on the context of the Anglican tradition in terms of Reformation preoccupations and concerns. This collection’s thematic content, chronological span, and geographical range will also challenge accepted views, deepen understanding, and highlight new areas of enquiry, bringing new research and insights to bear on established observations.
Academics will find this book of particular interest for courses on the Reformation, Early Modern Europe, and the history of Christianity.
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Richard Hooker: The Confident Church of England Reformer



Richard Hooker is generally acknowledged as a critical sixteenth-century figure in the Church of England. He has been claimed by a variety of advocates for positions inside and outside the Church of England and for positions that developed later. An apparently eirenic attitude to Roman Catholics and occasional criticisms of central figures of the Protestant Reformation should not obscure the fact that he was a confident upholder of the Reformation of the Church of England, and that his careful defence of its institutions did not, in his mind, exceed a careful reformed position. His defence provides a platform convenient for ecumenical discussions.

Attitude to ‘the Papists’

Hooker’s attitude to ‘the Papists’ was out of the ordinary polemical mode.1 Walter Travers accused Hooker of preaching ‘sower leaven’ in his sermons at the ‘Temple’. This phrase from the New Testament allusion to tiny yeast’s power to ‘puff up’ flour referred to corrupt pre-Reformation and contemporary Roman Catholic views, particularly on the Pelagian question and the doctrine of justification by faith. In Travers’ mind were, no doubt, the questions of assurance and of Hooker’s notorious view of the two wills in God. Travers and Hooker do not seem to have quarreled on sacramental theology; but principally involved must have been Travers’ conviction that Hooker’s generous view about the possibility of salvation of Roman Catholics compromised the principle of the gratuity of justification.

Hooker consistently held a particularly generous view of contemporary...

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