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Its teaching includes Divine Mercy, sanctification through faith and evangelisation of the Gospel as well as Catholic social teaching, which emphasises voluntary support for the sick, the poor, and the afflicted through the corporal and spiritual works of mercy.The Catholic Church is the largest non-government provider of education and health care in the world.Since the 20th century the majority reside in the southern hemisphere due to secularisation in Europe, and increased persecution in the Middle East.The Catholic Church shared communion with the Eastern Orthodox Church until the East–West Schism in 1054, disputing particularly the authority of the Pope.The Christian beliefs of Catholicism are based on the Nicene Creed.The Catholic Church teaches that it is the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic church founded by Jesus Christ in his Great Commission, The Latin Church, the twenty-three Eastern Catholic Churches, and institutes such as mendicant orders, enclosed monastic orders and third orders reflect a variety of theological and spiritual emphases in the church.Before the Council of Ephesus in AD 431 the Church of the East also shared in this communion, as did the Oriental Orthodox churches before the Council of Chalcedon in AD 451, all separating primarily over differences in Christology.From the late 20th century, the Catholic Church has received criticism from some for its teaching on sexuality, its refusal to ordain women, as well as the handling of sexual abuse cases involving clergy.

In its own field it gives force to civil law only by specific enactment in matters such as the guardianship of minors.

The Catholic Church has influenced Western philosophy, culture, art, and science.

Catholics live all over the world through missions, diaspora, and conversions.

The triple crown papal tiara symbolises the triple power of the Pope as "father of kings", "governor of the world" and "Vicar of Christ".

The gold cross on a monde (globe) surmounting the tiara symbolises the sovereignty of Jesus.

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