Catholics and Protestants are both Christians, which means that their Holy Book is the Bible and they both worship Jesus Christ, as they believe him to be the Son of God.
The Roman Catholic Church teaches that it developed from the community formed by Jesus himself in the first century AD. Over the next centuries the Catholic Church become very rich and powerful and its influence spread throughout much of Western Europe.
A split occurred during what is known as the Protestant Reformation. This was mainly started by a German friar called Martin Luther. He disagreed with some of the rules and beliefs of the Catholic faith and he tried to ‘reform’ the Catholic Church, but instead they split, and a new movement within Christianity was created.
Catholics believe that the Pope is God’s representative on Earth, and their beliefs are based on traditions as well as the Bible itself. Protestants reject the authority of the Pope and for them the Bible is only basis for their faith.
For a site with a chart of the differences, please click on the link below:
A chart showing the differences from Diffen.
For more detail, please see the following link:
More reading from BBC Bitesize.
For a video on what happened in England, please see the video below: