Reformation iconoclasm: What is it?

It is indeed sad, but we are seeing it even today – Reformation iconoclasm – the deliberate destruction of everything that has been held sacred for so long. Smashing religious monuments and icons such as crucifixes and pulpits are done because of religious or political motives. How familiar are these protestant/catholic issues dating back to the 15th and 16th century in Scotland as they are today? Calvinism took over many churches for worship, and at first, this Calvinist takeover was connected with acts of Reformation iconoclasm as well as religious violence. Buildings associated with Catholic worship were stripped of their Catholic ‘trimmings’. Not only that, the inflammatory teachings of John Knox caused church buildings to be burned. Today in Scotland, one could well ask – Reformation or Revolution? The seeds of revolution are again being sown as Scotland’s Protestant-Catholic rift is found today in violent football rivalry, and this worrying enmity between the teams is only reinforcing an ancient rift between Protestants and Catholics.

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