Never Stop Reforming! (Even after 500 years...we still have a long way to go)
In anticipation of the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation, I thought it would be fun to read some of the famous quotes by Martin Luther and others. I hope that we, together, can get into the spirit of the Reformation at St. Stephen’s. Come to worship that Sunday morning and learn how the Reformation was not just an event with a start and finish...but how one moment in history keeps us pushing forward in the spirit of Reforming and striving to hear the new and wonderfully Holy places we are called. The Reformation is still going...and will only end when we see the Kingdom of Heaven. Until then we need to continue to listen to the transformative voice of God found in the Word, in Scripture, and in the witness we bear to one another.
October 29, 2017
10:00 am at St. Stephen’s, Dedication of the painting ‘Morning’ by Rev. Linda Gunderson in commemoration of the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation
10:15 am Reformation Sunday service of hymns and communion
4:00 pm at Trinity Episcopal Parish (on Adams St.) Statewide celebration with the ELCA and Communion Partners (The Episcopal Church, The United Methodist Church, The United Church of Christ, and the Presbyterian Church USA). Bishop Bill Gohl will preside and preach.
“In short, I will preach it, teach it, write it, but I will constrain no one by force, for faith must come freely without compulsion. Take myself as an example. I opposed indulgences and all the papists, but never with force. I simply taught, preached and wrote God’s Word; otherwise I did nothing. And while I slept, or drank Wittenberg beer with my friends Philipp and Amsdorf, the Word … did everything.”
—Martin Luther (1483-1546)
“One man, Martin Luther, took a stand that literally shredded the fabric of Europe. It changed theology, it changed politics, it changed society and it changed political boundaries. It gave us a revolution in education, in literacy. There are many, many manifestations of the Reformation.”
—Tom Rassieur, curator, “Martin Luther: Art and the Reformation”
“A Christian congregation should never gather together [in worship] without the preaching of God’s Word and prayer, no matter how briefly. … For all that matters is that God’s Word be given free course to encourage and enliven hearts, so that they do not become burdened.”
“I have a hard time picturing several aspects of the modern world without Luther.”
—Martin E. Marty, ELCA pastor and professor
"Be comforted, little dog, thou too in the Resurrection shalt have a tail of gold." ... If I went in alone, it wouldn't be Heaven for me."
“All that matters is that God’s Word be given free course to encourage and enliven hearts so that they do not become burdened.”
“In particular, our church will have to confront the vices of hubris, the worship of power, envy, and illusionism as the roots of all evil. It will have to speak of moderation, authenticity, trust, faithfulness, steadfastness, patience, discipline, humility, modesty, contentment. It will have to see that it does not underestimate the significance of the human ‘example’ (which has its origin in the human of Jesus and is so important in Paul’s writings!); the church’s word gains weight and power not through concepts but by example.”
—Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906-45), theologian
Whenever the devil harasses you, seek the company of men or drink more, or joke and talk nonsense, or do some other merry thing. Sometimes we must drink more, sport, recreate ourselves, and even sin a little to spite the devil, so that we leave him no place for troubling our consciences with trifles. We are conquered if we try too conscientiously not to sin at all. So when the devil says to you: do not drink, answer him: I will drink, and right freely, just because you tell me not to.
It is better to think of church in the ale-house than to think of the ale-house in church.
If you young fellows were wise, the devil couldn't do anything to you, but since you aren't wise, you need us who are old. —Martin Luther
“Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree.”
Yours in Christ,