Portal:Christianity

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Sermon on the Mount

Christianity (from the Greek word Khristos Xριστός "Christ" or 'Anointed') is a monotheistic religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus as presented in the New Testament, who (according to Christian scripture) lived during 4BC-30AD. Adherents of Christianity, known as Christians, believe that Jesus is the Son of God and the Messiah prophesied about in the Hebrew Bible (the part of scripture common to Christianity, Islam (although differences are seen in the Islamic Pentateuch and the Judeo-Christian Pentateuch) and Judaism). Christian theology claims that Jesus suffered, died, and was resurrected to bring about salvation from sin. Christians call the message of Jesus Christ the Gospel ("good news") and hence refer to the earliest written accounts of his ministry as gospels. These early written accounts are the first four books of the New Testament called Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Like Judaism, Christianity is classified as an Abrahamic religion (see also Judeo-Christian). Christianity began as a Jewish sect in the eastern Mediterranean, quickly grew in size and influence over a few decades, and by the 4th century had become the dominant religion within the Roman Empire. During the Middle Ages, Christianity lost up to two thirds of its size to Muslim military (North Africa, Middle East and parts of Europe), but also most of the remainder of Europe was Christianized. Since then, Christians have also been a (sometimes large) religious minority in the Middle East, North Africa, and parts of India. Following the Age of Discovery, through missionary work and colonization, Christianity spread to the Americas and the rest of the world. Christianity has played a prominent role in the shaping of Western civilization since at least the 4th century. As of the early 21st century, Christianity has between 1.5 billion and 2.1 billion adherents, representing about a quarter to a third of the world's population. According to The Routledge Companion to the Study of Religion, it is the world's largest religion.

Selected article

Stained glass depiction of Joseph Smith's first vision.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sometimes referred to as the LDS Church or the Mormon Church, describes itself as the restoration of the original church established by Jesus Christ. It claims to be a Christian church, but separate from the Catholic or Protestant traditions.

The church teaches that God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith, Jr. and called him to be a prophet and to restore the original church as established by Jesus Christ through a restoration of elements that had been missing from Christianity since the early days of Christianity due to apostasy. This restoration included the return of priesthood authority, new sacred texts, and the calling of twelve apostles. The Church was organized under the leadership of Joseph Smith in Fayette, New York, on April 6, 1830, following his translation of the Book of Mormon from which adherents—also called Latter-day Saints—get their nickname Mormons.

Joseph Smith led the church until his violent death in 1844. After a period of confusion where the church was led by the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and various claims of succession were made, Brigham Young led a group of Mormon pioneers away from the former church headquarters in Nauvoo, Illinois, and eventually to the Salt Lake Valley of Utah in July 1847. Brigham Young was sustained as President of the church at General Conference in December 1847.

Now an international organization, the church has its world headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah where Thomas Monson serves as its sixteenth President. The church sends tens of thousands of missionaries throughout the world, and in 2005 reported a worldwide membership of over 12.5 million.

Selected scripture

Ichthus.svg
Matthew 8:21-22 (KJV)

21 And another of his disciples said unto him, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father. 22 But Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead.

Did you know...

...that Roman Catholic and some Protestant churches celebrate Mass, while Eastern Christian churches instead celebrate Divine Liturgy?
...that the length of a Church service can vary widely, depending on the denomination and priest, and can range from 40 minutes to 3 hours?
...that Mandarin Chinese translates the word "Christ" as Jidu (基督)?
...that the Basilica of Our Lady of Peace of Yamoussoukro in Côte d'Ivoire is listed by Guinness World Records as the largest church in the world?


Selected biography

Portrait of buer from Icones quinquaginta vivorum, by Jean-Jacques Boissard
Martin Bucer (or Butzer) (11 November 1491 – 28 February 1551) was a Protestant reformer based in Strasbourg who influenced Lutheran, Calvinist, and Anglican doctrines and practices. Bucer's efforts to reform the church in Wissembourg resulted in his excommunication from the Roman Catholic Church, and he was forced to flee to Strasbourg. He acted as a mediator between the two leading reformers, Martin Luther and Huldrych Zwingli, who differed on the doctrine of the Eucharist. Later, Bucer sought agreement on common articles of faith such as the Tetrapolitan Confession and the Wittenberg Concord, working closely with Philipp Melanchthon on the latter. Although his ministry did not lead to the formation of a new denomination, many Protestant denominations have claimed him as one of their own. He is remembered as an early pioneer of ecumenism.

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Notre-Dame - Eglise Cathédrale de Paris 2

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