What if, a string of Popes in Rome that are so corrupt, so incompetent, and does something so stupid (Like maybe making the Roman Papacy hereditary) that they shatter the view of the Roman Papacy. Later when the Protestant Reformation happens, the Catholic world just shatters, and New Antipopes, Papacies, and churches are created, all competing with each other, and claiming Catholic dominion over each other.

(Note: Places like Spain and Portugal, ETC still maintains Catholic traditions, only difference is that they don't follow the Pope in Rome. Also, tried my best with the map. A bit ASB, but it's interesting to me)


Portuguese Papacy- Papacy created by the Portuguese Monarchy, and controls the Portuguese Inquisition, headed by an Portuguese pope against every other papacies.

Church of Ireland- Claims jurisdiction over the whole of Ireland, but with Anglicans in the North.

Protestants- Like OTL, only difference is that they have more influence.

Church of England- At first, followed the Pope in Rome, but split like OTL.

Roman Papacy- ITTL, a string of corrupt popes leads to incompetent decisions that shatters the Catholic World.

Church of Poland- Lutherans have more influence ITTL, and creates the Church of Poland.

French Papacy- Sort of like a restored Avignon Papacy. Still gets into conflicts with the Huguenots.

Huguenots- Larger influence in ITTL, stills gets into conflict with the French Papacy.

Spanish Papacy- Similar story to the Portuguese Papacy. Only that the King has more Influence in this Papacy. Centered in Toledo, the Spanish Pope claims dominion of the Catholic world(Really doesn't)

Hungarian Church- Similar story the Polish Church.

Church of Venice- The Venetians split from the Roman Papacy, and creates it's own church.

Church of Scotland- Similar story to OTL

Hussites/Bohemian Church- Hussites maintain their hold on Bohemia.

Islam- Same as OTL

Mainz Papacy/ Holy Roman Papacy- After the corruption of the Roman Papacy, Charles V elevates the Electorate of Mainz into a Papacy, with the Pope, still maintain their role to vote for the HRE Emperor, and crowns them.
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The thing about popes is that there's only meant to be one at a time, so I think that any situation with multiple antipopes would see too much desire for reunification to be stable. Most likely the scenario you describe would play out as a faster and more expansive spread of Protestantism.
Yeah, in such an addmitedly unlikely situation, I think you would have more 'Anglican-like' churches instead of mini-papacies. Not to mention more protestant movements.
Maybe keep the Avignon split into the era of Reformers and the Hussite wars? Demoralize the Papacy even further. Borgia-tier popes everywhere.
The 16th century is an age of religious chaos, adding more fire to the reformers.
The Popes and Anti-Popes get doctrinal differences.
Eventually, nobody knows who's the Pope this week. Where? When? Becomes the question.

Rather than a stark break between Catholicism and Protestantism, what we get are Anglican-style national churches. They all have different doctrines more or less, through some are more similar. For example, the Portuguese and Spanish churches are pretty much as OTL, while the German church is pretty much Lutheranism with a "Pope".

Taking a page from the Orthodox, we may get a Ecumenical Pope/Patriarch instead, who is only first of equals with the National Cardinals/Popes/Patriarchs.

Being Christian/Catholic becomes closer to how Protestants define it in place full of different types of Protestants, like the US.
Essentially, if you swear by the original Nicene Creed, you are Christian. Otherwise, you're out - so Catholic-ish Luterans and normal catholics are in, but Arians and Cathars are out.

One thing that could help with disunity is keeping the Turk away from Europe. The Ottomans have a less favorable 14th-15th century and they get pretty much broken by the Timurids, leading to a Balkans that is fragmented between slavic orthodox states like Serbians and Bulgarians, the Empire and whatever remains of the Frankokratia being slowly eaten by the Empire, and Anatólia returning to being a mess of feuding turkish beyliks, with Mamluk-controlled Egypt being the main Muslim power due to surviving the Timurid onslaught. This leads to weaker Berber pirates too.

By the 1300s, the Iberian Peninsula is pretty much assured Christian domination. The Portuguese already wrapped up their Reconquista and are already sizing up territories elsewhere while preparing to make sure they will be independent. The Castilleans and Aragonese are wrapping it up, the Muslims are limited to south.
I kind of feel like the Spanish would have "encouraged" the Portuguese to join their Church.

I’d say Charles V would try to merge the Mainz Papacy and the Spanish Papacy, but fails.

If Philip II still becomes king of Spain and Portugal, he could merge the two papacies into an Iberian Papacy

Now, if Philip II wants to reunite all of Catholicism into one Pope, he would have to go to war with the French Papacy (France), the Mainz Papacy (Half of the HRE), Church of Poland (Polish-Lithuania), Church of Venice (Venice) and finally the Roman Papacy (the rest of Italy)
I have a have a question. No disrespect, but what does the balkans have to do with the entire Catholic world shattering, I thought they were mostly orthodox.
It's easier to hold the Church together when there's a perceived threat on the horizon, as opposed to a series of loosely affiliated national churches.
If the Polish does form their own church from the Germans, would they come to rescue at the siege of Vienna? Or would a common enemy (Ottomans) bring me the two countries to allied with each other?
The Council of Constance only manages to have Jan Hus burned at the stake and to elect another pope intended to replace the 3 competing ones, but they simply don't accept the council's verdict and they as well as the forth one elected at the council seek support in different kingdoms / principalities. Many princes start regarding the Roman Catholic Church as an irredeemable institution and either go outright protestant or, together with the local high clergy, form national Catholic churches who may be in communion with each other but are institutionally separate.
Wanted to ask, how would a more divided catholic Europe effect the thirty years war? Could it still happen or would it be butterflies away? And if it still happens, how could it be altered?
It would be butterflied away as we know it, but a war or series of them could produce similar effects to OTL eventually.
Okay, without a lone whore that sits the seven hills to unify prod hate, maybe an ecumenical council of all the popes and equivalent protestant leaders. Or do we see fifteen separate Inquisitions?
The only problem is why would a monarch appoint another pope as their head of the church when they can just give themselves that titile, and gain a huge amount of money and power? If this happened, I generally see a much more positive world. In France, the Church of France would likely be followed by around 75% of France, with the remaining 25% being other protestants.
The only problem is why would a monarch appoint another pope as their head of the church when they can just give themselves that titile, and gain a huge amount of money and power? If this happened, I generally see a much more positive world. In France, the Church of France would likely be followed by around 75% of France, with the remaining 25% being other protestants.

Simple: To justify that its THE One True Catholic Church (TM). This could be used to justify conquests, I mean, "unifying the One True Church". This can also mean other allied countries can join THEIR church, after all, its not the French Church, its the One True Papacy (TM).

There's also the possibility that this is the condition for the Clergy to support the split: Keeping Temporal and Secular power separated.

Don't forget: The endgame of pretty much every big boy in Europe, was bringing back the Western Roman Empire or doing a Charlemagne Electric Boogaloo. Except the Ottomans, who had already unified the Eastern half and wanted the other half.
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