Roman Catholic Church    Eastern Orthodox Church    
    Relationship to State  Competition with secular   Subject to Emperor         
                           government                 (official head of the      
    Style of Spirituality  Emphasis on grandeur of    Deification (sharing       
                           God Themes of sin,         Jesus'                        
                           sacrifice and atonement    divinity) Mystical         
                                                      goals: Knowledge of God    
     Distinctive modes of  Canon law, personal        Icons Hesychasm            
                  worship  discipline                 (monastic spiritual        
                                                      discipline) "unceasing     
                                                      prayer" Philokalia,        
                                                      writings of Church         
                 Theology  Holy Spirit came from      Holy Spirit proceeds       
                           Father and Son             only from Father           
         Church structure  Headed by Pope             Spiritual head: the        
                           (successor to Peter)       Patriarch of               
                           Exclusion of laity Power   Constantinople More        
                           of excommunication.        democratic: Strong lay     
                                                      influence, synods          

Return to main document