What was the medieval Church's role in the economy?  

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As was true with seemingly every other phase of life during the Middle Ages, the Medieval Church played a significant role in the economy. After Pope Urban II urged Europeans to recapture Jerusalem from the Muslims in 1095, significant economic change came to Europe over the course of the next...

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As was true with seemingly every other phase of life during the Middle Ages, the Medieval Church played a significant role in the economy. After Pope Urban II urged Europeans to recapture Jerusalem from the Muslims in 1095, significant economic change came to Europe over the course of the next two centuries.

Wealthy Europeans were required to spend large sums of money on these expensive crusades. Those in the noble class funded these crusades through selling property and taking loans. This eventually resulted in a redistribution of wealth in Europe that created a middle-class that wasn't previously in existence.

This wealth redistribution also created a new group of extremely poor people. Though the government attempted to ban the poor from public places, the Catholic Church stepped in and asserted that even the poor should receive basic needs and provided to many free food and shelter.

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