Council of Constance Convenes to Deal With Three Popes Controversy Hot

Council of Constance Convenes to Deal With Three Popes Controversy

Western Schism
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The Council of Constance convenes to deal with the Western Schism. Also known as the "Three Popes Controversy," the Catholic Church has been divided by the existence of three rival lines of popes.

Organizing this council has been very difficult because none of the rival popes have been willing to approve of one. The popes insist that for any council to be valid, it must first be called by a pope.

Cardinals and theologians are desperate to resolve the situation, however, and are willing to find a way around the letter of the law. At one point they claim that councils are superior to the popes.

The Council of Constance is called by Antipope John XXIII, but Pope Gregory XII of the Roman faction confirms it. The Council's solution to the schism is to have all the rival popes resign so they can elect a new pope and start over. In part because of his willingness to work with the council, Pope Gregory XII is treated as having been the legitimate pope. In November, 1417, the Council of Constance will elect Pope Martin V as pope.

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The Great Western Schism

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