Due: Thursday, February 25
(Wednesday for 8-2)
Instructions: Create an imaginative and colorful visual timeline of the Church History
events listed below. You may use pretty much whatever you want (posterboard, Legos,
crayons, a program on your laptop, etc.), just so long as the following rubric is followed.
1. Have all of the events in chronological order (4 points)
2. Include the name of each event (4 points)
3. Include the date of each event (4 points)
4. Include some kind of picture or creative visual for each event (4 points)
5. Pictures/visuals should connect to what happened at each event (4 points)
6. Timeline should be neat and understandable (4 points)
24 points total
*Note: If you create your timeline using your laptop, please have a printed color copy of
it on the day it is due. Do not expect a teacher to print it for you on the day that it is due.
CHURCH HISTORY EVENTS
Event #1: Creation
Date: Pre-History (unknown)
God creates everything out of nothing (Latin phrase “creatio ex nihilo” = “creation out
God makes humans the pinnacle of His creation. They are made “in the image and
likeness of God”.
Event #2: The Fall
Date: Pre-History (unknown)
Adam and Eve are tempted by Satan and disobey God by eating the fruit.
Sin enters the world and brings these 7 effects:
Ensnarement (being spiritually trapped), division among people, separation from
God, destruction, suffering, unhappiness, and death.
Event#3: The Protoevangelium
Date: Pre-History (right after The Fall)
Protoevangelium is Latin for “first Gospel”. This refers to Genesis 3:15 when the Bible
gives the first hint at Mary and Jesus one day crushing Satan (the “snake”).
*The following 2 events overlap over thousands of years
Event#4: The Israelites (“Izzies”) Ups and Downs
Date: Circa 2000-4 B.C.
The Israelites go towards and away from God over a long period of time.
During this time the people are waiting for the Messiah to show up and help fix
everything. They frequently cry out “How long, O Lord?” in the book of Psalms because
they want to finally be rescued from all their troubles.
Famous stories of the flood, tower of Babel, Abraham and Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses,
famous prophets, kings, priests, etc.
Examples of going towards God:
People worshipping at the Temple
Good leaders (some of the judges, prophets, and kings helped the people come
back to God)
Examples of going away from God:
People worshipping false gods
People doing very immoral things (lots of killing, cheating, lying, etc.)
The 12 tribes of Israel split into 2 (the “Northern Kingdom” and the “Southern
*This event overlaps with the event above
Event#5: Messianic Clues
Date: Circa 2000-4 B.C.
God gives the Israelites hundreds of clues about when the Messiah (Jesus!) will come,
what he will be like, what he’ll do, etc. The clues are kind of like scattered puzzle pieces
that don’t really make sense until Jesus dies and rises from the dead. At this point people
start to put all the clues together and realize that Jesus was the Messiah that they had all
been waiting for, although he was different than what they originally expected.
*Some examples of Messianic clues listed below (many more can be found on the
1. The Messiah will be born of a young virgin woman (Isaiah 7:14)
2. The Messiah will triumphantly enter Jerusalem on a donkey (Zechariah 9:9)
3. The Messiah will come from Bethlehem (Micah 5:1)
4. The Messiah’s garments will be given away by casting lots (Psalm 22:19)
5. The Messiah will remain silent before his accusers (Isaiah 53:7)
6. The Messiah will be buried in a rich man’s tomb (Isaiah 53:9)
7. The Messiah will be betrayed for 30 pieces of silver (Zechariah 11:12-13)
8. The Messiah will be betrayed by a friend (Psalm 41:10)
9. The Messiah will come from the line of David (Psalm 132:11)
10. The Messiah will be beaten, mocked, and spit upon (Isaiah 50:6)
11. The Messiah will be killed among criminals (Isaiah 53:12)
12. The Messiah will be given gifts and receive honor from kings (Psalm 72:10-11)
13. The Messiah will perform miracles that cure the blind, deaf, and lame (Isaiah
14. The Messiah’s side will be pierced (Zechariah 12:10)
15. The Messiah will be mocked (Psalm 22:7)
16. The Messiah’s hands and feet will be pierced (Psalm 22:16)
17. The Messiah’s bones will not be broken (Psalm 34:20)
Date: Circa 4 B.C. – 30 A.D.
Birth of Jesus
Baptism by John the Baptist
Temptation in the desert
Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7)
Wedding at Cana
Giving the “keys” to Peter
The Sorrowful mysteries…
Jesus gives His mother to the Church (John 19:25-27)
Event#7: Pentecost (the “birthday of the Church”)
Date: 30 A.D.
All of Jesus’ followers are given the Holy Spirit (symbolized by tongues of fire on their
After receiving the Holy Spirit the people courageously go out and start spreading the
Good News to EVERYONE – even if it meant death.
With Pentecost God reverses the Tower of Babel story by helping everyone speak in
languages that they can understand.
Event#8: New Testament books written and collected
Date: 50-100 A.D.
Paul’s letters read at Masses. Eventually Gospels and other books were written and also
read at early Christian Masses.
All New Testament books were either written by one of Jesus’ apostles or by someone
who directly knew an apostle
Books written later on were NOT included in the New Testament (they were seen as
unreliable because of how late they were written)
Event#9: The Age of Martyrs
Date: 64-312 A.D.
After a large fire that burned a large chunk of Rome, Nero blamed the Christians and the
government-sanctioned persecution of Christians began, oftentimes in the Roman
coliseum (example: Christians last prayer picture)
St. Peter was crucified upside down after saying, “I am not worthy to die the same way
as my Savior”.
29 of the first 31 popes were martyred
Many evil emperors (Nero and Diocletian, for instance). were responsible for the killing
of Christians. They wanted to exterminate Christianity for good.
“The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church” (whenever the Church is persecuted
it becomes stronger in faith)
Ichthys fish becomes a popular symbol for Christians
Event#10: The Church Fathers and the Church Councils
Date: 325 – 451 A.D.
The Church Fathers were super smart Christians who helped explain the teachings of
God in extraordinary ways. Many of them were also “apologists”, which means that they
spent a lot of time defending the faith from all kinds of crazy non-Christian ideas that
were being taught by different people (for example: that Jesus was not actually God, that
you can get to Heaven just by being good, etc.).
Some of the most important Church Fathers:
1. St. Augustine: He was a big-time sinner who eventually became Catholic
(after his mama, St. Monica, prayed for him for 17 straight years!). He wrote
two really awesome books: Confessions (which is all about his life and how he
turned from his many sins and went to God) and City of God (which is about
the fact that our real home is not on earth, but in Heaven)
2. St. Jerome: He translated the Bible into Latin so that many people could read
it (this version of the Bible was called the “Vulgate”)
3. The Desert Fathers: These were the first-known “hermits” (aka monks) that
went out to the desert in order to grow closer to God through prayer and
fasting. These are the dudes that helped develop the Rosary over a long period
The Church Councils refers to moments when all the leaders (bishops) of the Catholic
Church got together to discuss the disagreements that started to arise about who exactly
Jesus was. For instance, in the year 325 AD the bishops got together for the “Council of
Nicea” to talk about a teaching that was going around that said Jesus was only a human
being and not actually God. These bishops discussed this and were able to clarify that
Jesus was actually 100% God AND 100% man. Councils like this happened a number of
times during these years because many heresies (false-teachings) were going around.
Event#11: The Great Eastern Schism
Date: 1054 A.D.
After 1,000 years of Christians being united, the Church was split into two different
groups: The Western Church (the Catholic Church) and the Easter Church (the Eastern
One of the biggest differences between these two churches is that Catholics believe the
Pope is the leader of the Church on earth while most Eastern Orthodox Christians do not
look up to him as being their leader.
Event#12: Medieval Christendom
Date: 1095-1415 A.D.
BAD things that happened during this time:
1. The Crusades
The Crusades were “holy” wars fought by Christians in order to get the Holy Land back
from the Muslims who took it years before.
There were about 8 crusades in all, with the vast majority of them being “unsuccessful”
(the Christians didn’t really get the Holy Land back from the Muslims).
The Crusades, for the most part, are seen as a complete embarrassment to the Church
because of how brutal and violent these wars actually were.
2. The Inquisition
The Inquisition refers to the time when Catholics punished people for being heretics
(people who didn’t follow the true teachings of the Catholic faith). During this time
people were put in prison, fined money, and sometimes even tortured or burned at the
3. The Avignon Papacy
This refers to the time in history when the Pope did not live in Rome but lived in Avignon,
France. During this time there ended up being all kinds of bad popes (some fought
battles, collected all kinds of money, and had children). And eventually there were
supposedly 3 popes at the same time, all claiming to be the real pope! (the fake popes
were referred to as “antipopes”)
GOOD things that happened during this time:
1. St. Francis of Assisi and St. Clare of Assisi
St. Francis gave up a life of money and popularity in order to follow Jesus more closely.
He gave up all that he had and spent the rest of his life serving the poor and preaching to
people about the love of God. He started the religious order called the Franciscans.
St. Clare was one of St. Francis’ first followers. At the age of 18 she escaped from her
home and started a community of nuns which are now called the Poor Clares.
2. St. Thomas Aquinas
St. Thomas Aquinas disobeyed his parents by becoming a Dominican friar and would
eventually become the smartest Catholic theologian and philosopher to have ever lived
(which is kind of funny considering his nickname at first was “the Dumb Ox”). He wrote
a number of books, his most famous being the “Summa Theologiae” (which means,
“Summary of Theology”).
3. Gothic Architecture
Before this time churches tended to be relatively small with thick walls and small
windows and usually dark inside. When Gothic architecture came around churches
started to be built HUGELY and contained beautiful stained-glass windows which helped
teach the people who couldn’t read (many people at that time) about the life of Jesus.
The Catholic Church was responsible for the creation of some of the earliest universities
the world ever knew. Because of this there are thousands upon thousands of colleges and
universities in the world today.
Event#13: The Protestant Reformation and the Counter Reformation
Date: 1517 / 1545 A.D.
In an attempt to correct some of the bad things the Catholic Church was doing at the
time, Martin Luther ended up splitting off from the Catholic Church and starting his own.
Eventually many others (John Calvin, Ulrich Zwingli, etc.) would do the same thing and
start their own “denominations” (kinds of Christian churches). At the start of the
Protestant Reformation there were only 2 main churches (the Catholic Church and the
Eastern Orthodox Church). Today there are over 33,000 Protestant denominations!
The Counter Reformation was the Catholic response to the Protestant Reformation.
Basically the Catholic Church finally “woke up” and started to fix a bunch of the bad
things that were going on.
Event#14: The Enlightenment
Date: 1637-1789 A.D.
The Enlightenment started in France but spread all over Europe and eventually to
America. The people of the Enlightenment claimed that religion and its teachings were
too “old school” and only for uneducated people. For the Enlightenment people, science
was the most important thing and God either didn’t exist (atheism) or did but didn’t
really care about the people and the world he created (deism). These ways of thinking are
still very much around in America and Europe today.
Event#15: The 2nd Vatican Council (“Vatican II”)
Date: 1962-1965 A.D.
Vatican II was a council in Rome where over 2,000 bishops met off and on for 4 years to
talk about ways to make the Catholic faith more relevant and understandable to the
One big change that happened because of Vatican II was that Mass was no longer
celebrated in Latin but in the language of the people (the “vernacular”). Also, the altar
was no longer placed next to the back wall where the priest would have his back to the
people but instead was moved and the priest now faced the people.
Event#16: Blessed Mother Teresa and Pope John Paul II
Date: 1910-1997 (Mama T), 1920-2005 (JP2)
Blessed Mother Teresa was a nun who began the Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta,
India. She spent most of her life praying (4 hours on her knees in front of the Eucharist
every morning!) and serving the poor (oftentimes picking them up off the streets and
taking care of them as they were diseased and dying).
Pope John Paul II was pope from 1978-2005. He traveled the world more than any other
person in the world, helped bring down Communism in Europe, and survived two
assassination attempts. He was able to speak at least 10 languages and was a brilliant
philosopher and theologian. His “Theology of the Body” has been called a “theological
time bomb ready to go off some time in the 21st century” because of how awesome it is.