This chapter presents the plan of the study. With the dialectic of theory and practice of priesthood and priest as the starting point of this work, it aims to elucidate the expectations of English laypeople from their priests in the first half of the sixteenth century, their reactions when these were unfulfilled, and their perceptions of the mutual obligations which underlay their relationship with the clergy. It presents the focus of this work which is on the parish clergy. Eight paradigms of priestly ‘function’ are identified which serves as the main topic of each of the chapters that will follow. Further, the author contends that the emphasis will not be upon identifying the causes of religious change, but on attempting to illuminate something of the nature of ‘popular religion’ in the early sixteenth century, and the impact of reform on the interaction of the ordinary Christian and his pastor.
Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.