Henry VIII, in 1513, wrote from his palace of Greenwich to Leo X that he could not sufficiently commend the Observant Friars' strict adherence to poverty, their sincerity, charity and devotion. No Order battled more assiduously against vice, and none were more active in keeping Christ's fold.
From the beginning, however, the Friars sided with Catherine of Aragon in opposing Henry VIII's attempts to have his marriage to her declared null. They were vocal in their opposition, using the pulpit at Sunday Mass, even, to descry Henry's marital ambitions to replace their queen (who might have been a third order Franciscan) with Anne Boleyn. In 1534, things came to a head: