Protestantism and Its Many Denominations
Read a Spanish-language version of this Web Guide.
A large part of the world, particularly the West, is very much a product of what happened almost 500 years ago in Europe. Today, most Americans consider themselves to be Protestants. The Reformation caused a rift in Christianity, and the views of Protestant groups gradually diverged, resulting in the wide variety of denominations that currently exist. Use the sites below to explore the Protestant history and the people, places and events that shaped the religious sects we have today.
Insights for Protestant History
- This section covers Protestant history, which technically begins around the time of the Reformation in the first half of the 16th century. If you're unfamiliar with Catholic/Christian history, some of the information presented below may be confusing. For context, try this one-page summary of the history of Christianity.
- Later sections of this guide have information on individual Protestant denominations. You’ll find links in those sections about the history of those specific denominations, many of which reach back to the Reformation.
Top Sites for Protestant History
Protestant Beliefs and Practices
Although the various denominations differ on many religious tenets, they do share similar ... read more »
Pentecostal Beliefs, Practices and Community
The Pentecostal name is derived from the events described in the New Testament: On the Day of ... read more »
Presbyterian Beliefs, Practices, News and Blogs
At 75 million members in the world, Presbyterianism is one of the most populous Protestant ... read more »
Anglican and Episcopalian Beliefs, Practices and Community
Episcopalianism is the strain of Anglicanism that developed in the United States. The ... read more »
Methodist Beliefs, Practices and Blogs
Methodists care strongly about spreading the word of God’s kindness through missionary work ... read more »
Lutheran Beliefs, Practices and Blogs
Lutherans follow the beliefs of Martin Luther, stressing the important role that faith plays in ... read more »
Baptist Beliefs, Practices and News
Numbering about 40 million worldwide, Baptists make up a large Protestant denomination. One of the ... read more »
Seventh-day Adventist Beliefs, Traditions and Community
Seventh-day Adventists came from the millennialist Millerite movement in 19th-century America, and ... read more »
Anabaptists were those that sprang from the Radical Reformation, as compared to the Evangelical ... read more »
Quaker Beliefs, Traditions and Community
The Quakers, or the Religious Society of Friends, number about 210,000 throughout the world. ... read more »
Unitarian Universalist Beliefs, Traditions and Blogs
Unitarian Universalism may not belong in the Protestant guide per se; it may not even fall fully ... read more »