Church Timeline (Demo)


1725 — Church of Utrecht separates from the roman catholic church

Old Catholics’ formal separation from Roman Catholicism began over the issue of Papal authority. On February 21, 1725, Pope Benedict XIII issued a brief declaring the election of Steenoven null and void, calling his consecration “illicit and execrable”. Both Varlet and Steenoven were suspended for illicit episcopal consecration and excommunicated for claiming a diocesan see of jurisdiction without the permission of the Roman Pontiff. This led to the breakaway of the Church of Utrecht.

1870 - Union of Utrecht

1870 — Union of Utrecht of the Old Catholic Churches is formed

At the First Vatican Council held from1869 to 1870, papal primacy in jurisdiction and the Catholic dogma of papal infallibility were defined, to the objection of the Old Catholic Church of the Netherlands and some communities in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. Several separate communities were formed at this time and eventually formed the Union of Utrecht of the Old Catholic Churches.

1871 - St Willbrod_s church

1871 — Church of Utrecht becomes the “Old Catholic Church”

In the spring of 1871, a convention was held in Munich which attracted several hundred participants, including the churches of Germany, Austria, Bohemia, and Switzerland who had earlier created the Union of Utrecht after Vatican I. The convention decided to form the “Old Catholic Church” to distinguish its members from what they saw as the novel teaching of papal infallibility in the Catholic Church.

1887 - Latin removed

1877 —Latin is removed in the Liturgy

Although it had continued to use the Roman Rite, from the middle of the 18th century the Dutch Old Catholic See of Utrecht had increasingly used the vernacular instead of Latin. The churches which broke from the Holy See in 1870 and subsequently entered union with the Old Catholic See of Utrecht gradually introduced the vernacular into the Liturgy until it completely replaced Latin in 1877.

1996 - Female priests ordained BnW

1996 — Women ordained as priests

In 1994 the German bishops decided to ordain women as priests and put this into practice on 27 May 1996. Similar decisions and practices followed in Austria, Switzerland, and the Netherlands. By the early 1900s, the movement included England, Canada, Croatia, France, Denmark, Italy, America, the Philippines, China, and Hungary. Old Catholic Churches are presently all over the world and particularly strong in Africa.