"The heliocentric model of the universe had been taught in Europe for a century prior to the Galileo trial without censure. Galileo's defense lawyers were Jesuit priests (famous or infamous, depending on your perspective, for their fanatical loyalty to the Church). Copernicus was a Catholic monk.
Galileo got in trouble because he was quite arrogant and he presumed himself fit to lecture learned theologians on matters of scripture. It had nothing to do with his scientific theories (which, btw, he could not prove at the time)"
I intend to verify these statements. I have long suspected this but hesitated to argue it.