chapter  4
Theological Disputes and Factional Politics
Pages 13

The authority of the Pope had been denied and the royal supremacy asserted in its stead. The number of sacraments had been reduced from seven to two, namely baptism and holy communion, though some Protestants still hankered after penance. The calendar of the Holy Year had been drastically reduced, along with all references to the Virgin Mary and the saints. In the churches themselves, furnishings had been cut to a minimum and the altar had become a movable communion table which often stood in the middle of the church. Church music was less elaborate than be fore the Reformation and the emphasis of the service was most definitely upon the minister and his sermon rather than on the priest as magician. The supremacy of the Bible was asserted over all other authorities like the Pope, Church Councils, and the commentaries of the early Christian Fathers*. Yet a Prayer Book had been retained - with many 'imperfections' as far as Puritans* were concerned - and the Canons* of the Church laid down in 1562/63 were likewise often ambiguous. Canon ten, for example, rejected free will, but Canon seventeen Was vague about what was involved in predestination* and election*, issues which were to be controversial throughout this period (126).