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The Church and the Crusades

             The Crusades had a profound effect on the way the Church is viewed. They represent a time in the Church where zealous believers were taken to cause through warfare as a sign of their faith and belief in God. The Crusades represented, for some, the ideal actions of authentic Christians, but, for others, the fanatic and misguided beliefs of overzealous believers. The intent and religious implications of the Crusades has been a topic that has divided many. On one side, you have those that believed the Crusades pleased God and through them they would be benefit spiritually; yet on the other, you have those that saw the Crusades as a malicious attach and atrocity by Christians. The Crusades undoubtedly benefited the cause of the Church, yet the negative consequences as well as specific Crusades will be surveyed throughout the work.
             Jerusalem had been captured by the Muslims Turks in 1076 which made it difficult for Christians to journey to, worship in and live within the city. For the purpose of re-capturing the city Christians began the first of many "Crusades".1 The intent in taking the city was for the "cause of Christ" and restoring the territories which were considered holy. With the call of Pope Urban the II the first official crusades were called to order. With the persecution of Christians and the "holy" land being occupied by unbelievers the Crusades were on the way.
             Those who enlisted to fight against those who had taken the city of Jerusalem were from all levels of society yet they were all joined by their belief in Christ. Pope Urban II, at the beginning of the crusades, spoke to those who had lent themselves to the cause of the crusades, saying, "Christians, hasten to help your brothers in the East, for they are being attacked. Arm for the rescue of Jerusalem under your captain Christ. Wear his cross as your badge. If you are killed your sins will be pardoned.

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