The Catholic Church is the Christian Church in full communion with the Bishop of Rome. It traces its origins and sees itself as the same Church founded by Jesus and maintained through Apostolic Succession from the Twelve Apostles.
The Catholic Church is the largest Christian Church and the largest organized body of any world religion. It is a worldwide organization made up of one Western or Latin-Rite and 22 Eastern Rite particular Churches, all of which have the Holy See of Rome as their highest authority. It is divided into jurisdictional areas, usually on a territorial basis. The standard territorial unit is called a diocese in the Latin Rite and an eparchy in the Eastern Rites, each of which is headed by a bishop.
Catholicism in The GladiatorEdit
Despite communism's taboo against religion, the Soviet Union left Catholicism untouched in heavily Catholic countries, including the Italian People's Republic. Thus, even the staunchest Italian communist was known to attend Mass.
Catholicism in Ruled Britannia Edit
Catholicism was the official state religion of England until the English Reformation under Henry VIII in 1529, at which point England became a Protestant kingdom. Throughout the remainder of the sixteenth century, religion became something of a political football, with Protestantism supported by Henry VIII and his daughter, Queen Elizabeth and Catholicism supported by Queen Mary Tudor and the Spanish-backed Queen Isabella.
The majority of England's neighbors, including Spain, France, and Ireland, were Catholic kingdoms, but in the Spanish colony of Netherlands a Protestant rebellion against King Philip II battled Catholic forces with English support. The Protestant Queen Elizabeth executed her Catholic cousin, Mary Queen of Scots, in 1587. By the rules of primogeniture, Mary had had the strongest claim on succession to the English throne after Elizabeth herself, and many Catholics the world over, believing that Henry's marriage to Anne Boleyn was invalid and Elizabeth was therefore illegitimate, had insisted that Mary was the rightful Queen of England even while Elizabeth lived.
Philip II, who like all Hapsburgs was devoutly Catholic, and who had briefly been king of a Catholic England during the reign of his second wife, Mary Tudor, as Queen of England, dispatched the Spanish Armada to invade and conquer England in 1588. The mission was successful, and the Spaniards installed Philip's daughter and son-in-law, Isabella and Albert as King and Queen of England. The new monarchs restored Catholicism and favored English and Irish Catholics (both of whom contributed troops to a Spanish-led international occupation garrison to enforce Hapsburg rule) over their Protestant neighbors and one-time persecutors.
When William and Robert Cecil orchestrated and led an uprising against Isabella and Albert in 1598, the general pattern was expected to be that English Protestants would support the rebellion and English Catholics would resist it. However, many English Catholics, tired of rule of their country by a foreign power, also supported the restoration of Elizabeth--though persecution of Catholics in England became fierce in the weeks and months following Elizabeth's restoration.
Catholicism in Southern Victory Edit
The victory of the Central Powers in the Great War had political advantages for the Catholic Church internationally, particularly in the newly-created CP-allied nations of Quebec, Ireland, and Poland. These countries were carved out of territories which American and German forces had occupied in possessions of empires where Protestant or Eastern Orthodox churches were established state churches.
Perhaps to prepare for a role marked by expanded prestige and influence in the new Republic, the Catholic Church in Quebec reorganized itself, with the approval of the Vatican. At least one new diocese was created, centered in Riviere-du-Loup. Father Pascal Talon was elevated to Bishop of Riviere-du-Loup. As Talon had been an ardent advocate for collaboration with the American authorities ever since the town served by his parish was overrun in 1914, some level of collusion between Rome and Philadelphia was suspected by congregants who were more ambivalent toward the new political order.
In the United States, Catholics made up a sizable segment of the population in the Northeastern region of the country. Al Smith became the first Catholic president in 1936.
In the Confederate States, the only Catholic majorities were in the Hispanic states of Sonora, Chihuahua, and Cuba. There was also a good-sized Catholic population among the Cajuns of Southern Louisiana (descendants of Quebecois refugees who settled the region several centuries earlier). Though the CS was predominantly Protestant and overtly favored that religion in many ways, Catholicism was a tolerated minority religion, especially under Jake Featherston, who saw no particular importance in any religion at all, so long as it did not present opposition to the Freedom Party. Featherston was pleased that Pope Pius XII did not condemn the Population Reduction.
Catholicism in In High Places Edit
In an alternate in which the Black Plague had killed nearly four-fifths of Europe's population, Roman Catholicism had developed into The Second Revelation, a movement that preached the power of Henri, God's Second Son, who was martyred by the Papacy as a heretic. In the aftermath of Henri's martyrdom, the reigning Pope was killed when a church roof collapsed on him. Followers of the Second Revelation venerated the wheel as well as the cross.
Due to the support of Pope Pius XII for the Race, Catholics in most of the territories administered by the Race tended to support the alien government, especially after the destruction of Rome by a German atomic bomb in 1943. However, they steadfastly refused to worship the Spirits of Emperors Past, and there was at least one uprising against the Race in the predominantly Catholic country of Argentina. The Catholic Poles supported the Race in Poland when their country was invaded by Germany in 1965 and put their militia under the chain of command of the Conquest Fleet. They had earlier resisted the Race when it first invaded in the 1940s.
Catholicism was the religion of England (indeed of most of Europe) at the time of the founding of the first settlements in Atlantis. The southern cities of Atlantis such as New Hastings and Freetown had already been settled for a lifetime when Henry VIII instituted the English Reformation and many Atlanteans, used to ignoring kings' orders whenever they felt like it, clung to their Catholic faith. At the time of the Atlantean War of Independence, Protestants made up a majority of English Atlantis (and a very large majority in northern cities which date only to the Tudor era, such as Hanover and Croydon) but not to anywhere near the extent that they made up a majority in Britain proper. Catholicism continued to flourish south of Hanover despite Atlantis's being "officially" Anglican.
In French and Spanish Atlantis, Catholicism remained the dominant religion thanks to the fact that neither France nor Spain ever gave it up as their official state religions. When the English absorbed French Atlantis after the French and Spanish War, French Atlantean Catholics, like their English Atlantean coreligionists, simply ignored their officially Protestant government.
Catholicism in "But It Does Move"Edit
Catholicism felt itself under siege throughout much of the 16th and 17th centuries as the Protestant Reformation began making headway throughout Europe, and the followers of Martin Luther and John Calvin grew in number and sharper in their criticism. The arrival of Galileo Galilei and his support for the Copernican model of the solar system was perceived as just one more attack on the Catholic faith. (The fact that the Church lumped Luther, Calvin, and Galileo together as threats is somewhat ironic, as both Protestant leaders had also described the Copernican view as heresy during their own life times.)
Thus, Pope Urban VIII ordered that the Inquisition investigate Galileo for heresy after he published his Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems. In order to thoroughly investigate Galileo, the Church employed a technique called "analysis", developed by one of its own cardinals, Sigismondo Gioioso.
After several meetings between Gioioso and Galileo, Galileo came to see that his motives in pursuing the Copernican view might have stemmed from rebellious impulses within himself, and also realized that the average person would not perceive, and so not benefit, from the change in worldviews.