William Bradford had a very negative opinion of the Church of England (also called the Anglican Church). Bradford was a member of a Puritan sect known as the Separatists. Like all Puritans, the Separatists had been influenced by John Calvin and his followers and thus believed the Anglican Church had been corrupted by Roman Catholic practices such as the office of Bishop, the veneration of saints, and ornamental items in churches (paintings, stained glass windows, etc.). As a Separatist, Bradford also believed the Church of England could not be redeemed from its corruption (some other Puritan groups believed the Church of England could be purified). This is why Bradford and the other Pilgrims left Europe to settle in the New World.