A set of common misconceptions exist with respect to the position of Protestant religion in the British isles. Most frequently encountered are the ideas that the Church of England is Protestant, and that Protestantism is (half) the cause of the 'Troubles' in Northern Ireland.
In the first case, the Anglican church, and especially the Church of England is not Protestant. It is an episcopally ordered Catholic Reformed Church. The reasons for this distinction are many, and in the reign of Elizabeth I, the distinction was not made, since Elizabeth was much more of the Protestant persuasion. James I and VI brought things to their present stand, more or less. A few acts of Parliament refer to 'Protestant' religion, but the church's own rules and formulas do not. Members of the Church of England do not generally refer to themselves as Protestant, unless they wish to strike some special contrast. The Anglican church is in many respects the direct successor of the original Catholic order in England, and although few would want to challenge the right of the Roman Catholic church to operate in that capacity as well, it is a role that the Church of England takes seriously.
Secondly, it is abundantly not the theological differences between Catholics and Protestants that are the cause of the troubles in Northern Ireland. The Protestants, now in the majority, were once Scots immigrants introduced for reasons of social engineering by the English, while the Catholics were indigenous Celts. The troubles are a racial conflict, and a study of the history of the province will bear this out. Besides, it is absurd to claim that the murders and atrocities commited by the two sides have anything to do with the ideals of Christianity in any form. Love your enemies, said Jesus. No to peace! said Mr Paisley. I am not lumping together all Protestants, or all Catholics, with the terrorists and tub-thumpers. But anyone who backs any of the parties allied to terrorist groups cannot seriously hold up their head as a Christian. The blood of thousands cries out in the province of Northern Ireland for peace, and the morons give us war.