About 10 years after the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, a large group of people called the Puritans arrived in the New World, also from England. They believed everyone should belong to the Church of England, but they had left England because they believed the Church of England needed to be purified. In their opinion, the Church back in England was embracing too many Catholic beliefs. Rather than continue to fight to purify the church in England, they traveled to the New World, where they could set up the Church in the right way, the Church of England that they envised, a more Protestant church in its beliefs than was the church back in England. They were led by John Winthrop. When they arrived in the New World, they settled in what would become Boston, and started the Massachusetts Bay Colony.
They were a big group, and very stern and serious about their religion and beliefs. If anyone disagreed with them, or questioned them, they believed that person was controlled by the devil.
Some of their important beliefs included:
- Everything should be done in moderation
- Everyone should be able to read and understand the teachings of the Bible, not just priests
- Sunday, the Sabbath, should only be spent reading the scriptures and thinking about God
- Human being were sinners with no hope of entering Heaven, except for the Puritans, who were a people apart (and superior) from other people, and even then, a Puritan could only enter Heaven if they lived their entire life as God would wish
- Morally, the Puritans believed their role in life was to be a chosen people whose job for God was to create a New Jerusalem