With the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, a lot is happening in and around our synod. Below you can find a list of events happening as well as resources to plan your own commemoration.
Events Commemorating the Reformation
Honoring Luther's Legacy at Augsburg University
Augsburg University in Minneapolis is holding a series of events throughout September & December, including the Christensen Symposium with Presiding Bishop Eaton, an evening lecture with Professor Mary Lowe, The Rose Ensemble, and Advent Vespers. Learn more at www.augsburg.edu.
Commemoration of the Reformation
St. Thomas University in St. Paul will hold a Commemoration of the Reformation on Saturday, October 7 from 9:00 am - 12:00 noon in McNeely Hall, Room 100. This morning conference will reflect on the past, look at the achievements of the ecumenical dialogue, and look at the challenges and opportunities ahead, both locally and globally. Presenters will include Dr. Dirk Lange (Luther Seminary), Dr. Christian Washburn (St. Paul Seminary), Bishop Lull, and Archbishop Bernard Hebda. More details can be found on their website.
October 27 & 28: Join in presentations and workshops Friday and Saturday by more than 25 theologians and musicians on Luther Seminary's campus. On Friday evening, the National Lutheran Choir will perform "Holy Spirit Mass". The Festival will conclude with worship on Saturday afternoon at Central Lutheran in downtown Minneapolis. Presiding Bishop Eaton will preach. Register & learn more at www.luthersem.edu/reformation.
Looking Back & Called Forward: ELCA 500
Please plan to join ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton on Tuesday, Oct. 31, as she co-hosts a commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.
The event, which will include speakers and a service, will be at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Bishop Eaton will be joined by co-hosts Indiana-Kentucky Synod Bishop Bill Gafkjen, ELCA Vice President Bill Horne and Metropolitan Washington, D.C., Synod Bishop Richard Graham.
The event, which will meet under the theme “Looking Back and Called Forward,” will be available online via livestream for all to watch. The livestream link is: elca.org/livestream.
Vänskä Conducts the Reformation Symphony: Celebrating 500 Years of Reformation through Music
Martin Luther's hammer rang out 500 years ago as he pounded his declaration of faith to the Wittenberg church door, and the Minnesota Orchestra marks the anniversary with music inspired by Luther's revolution. Bach poured a deep sense of spirituality even into his secular works like the beautiful Orchestral Suit No. 2. Luther's sturdy hymn, Ein feste Burg, is the heartbeat in Mendelssohn's celebratory Reformation Symphony , and it beats again through Sebastian Currier's remarkable new Reformation-inspired oratorio about ruin & regeneration, Re-formation.
Performances are Thursday, November 2 at 11am, Friday, November 3 at 8pm, and Saturday, November 4 at 8pm. Purchase tickets through www.MinnesotaOrchestra.org. The Friday performance will be broadcast live on Classical MPR 99.5 FM or through www.ClassicalMPR.org.
Martin Luther On Trial
The new play Martin Luther on Trialimagines a provocative courtroom drama where the German professor of theology must take the stand in defense of his religious and political controversies. Aided by his beloved wife Katrina, Luther is up against a wicked prosecutor -- who happens to be the Devil himself -- and a witness lineup that consists of Adolf Hitler, Sigmund Freud, Martin Luther King Jr. and Pope Francis. Catch the verdict when Martin Luther On Trial brings its witty and incisive examination to the Pantages Theatre in Minneapolis.
Performances are Saturday, November 11 and Sunday, November 12. Tickets & more information can be found here.
Lutheran-Catholic Service of Common Prayer
On Saturday, January 20, 2018, Lutherans & Catholics will join together in prayer and worship at the Basilica of Saint Mary in Minneapolis. Details are forthcoming.
The Saint Paul Area Synod kicked off the reformation anniversary at the 2016 Synod Assembly. Under the theme "We Are Lutheran: Bold & Hopeful", we examined what it means to be bold & hopeful on the cusp on the 500th anniversary of the reformation.
At our 2017 Synod Assembly, we welcomed Archbishop Bernard Hebda of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul & Minneapolis. Archbishop Hebda and Bishop Lull engaged in a Q&A session about the Reformation, ecumenicalism, and Roman Catholic-Lutheran relations.
Looking Back & Called Forward: ELCA 500
Please plan to join ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton on Tuesday, Oct. 31, as she co-hosts a commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. The event, which will include speakers and a service, will be at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Bishop Eaton will be joined by co-hosts Indiana-Kentucky Synod Bishop Bill Gafkjen, ELCA Vice President Bill Horne and Metropolitan Washington, D.C., Synod Bishop Dick Graham.
The event is open to the public and will be available online via livestream. All are invited to participate and honor the Reformation anniversary as we bear public witness to Christ, who frees us to love and serve our neighbor, and as we look to the future to which God is calling us. More information will be forthcoming at www.elca500.org.
ELCA's Freed & Renewed in Christ: 500 Years of God's Grace in Action
From www.elca500.org: "'Freed and Renewed in Christ' will be the theme used by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's churchwide organization in its observance of the 500th anniversary of the evangelical Lutheran Reformation that began with the Ninety-Five Theses that Martin Luther first made public on October 31, 1517."
To learn more about events, resources, and partnerships happening through the Freed & Renewed in Christ campaign, visit www.elca500.org.
Lutheran World Federation: Liberated by God's Grace
From www.2017.lutheranworld.org: "'Liberated by God’s Grace' is the main theme of our celebrations surrounding the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in 2017. All our celebrations, worship, study and engagement over the next three years will focus on how the gracious love of God, through the life and ministry of Jesus Christ, opens up opportunities for us as faithful Christians to reach out as healers and reconcilers to a world torn apart by strife and inequality."
To learn more about the resources available to you through Lutheran World Federation, visit www.2017.lutheranworld.org.
Lutheran World Federation: Joint Common Prayer
From LWF: "The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and The Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity (PCPCU), in cooperation with a group of noted theologians, have jointly developed a Common Prayer to mark the 500 years of the Reformation in 2017. The liturgical materials offer suggestions on how Catholic and Lutherans should preside and read together at a common prayer service. Examples are provided of hymns and songs from a variety of multicultural contexts, as well as biblical and confessional readings that reflect mutual joy and repentance, and the desire to serve and witness to the world together."
These liturgical materials are available for download in English, Spanish, French, German, & Dutch at www.lutheranworld.org.
Rick Steves' "Luther and the Reformation" Travel Documentary
From ELCA: For years, Rick Steves has had his sights on 2017. As the 500th anniversary of the Reformation approached, the travel guide knew he wanted to create for his popular PBS series a special devoted to Martin Luther and the ways in which his tumultuous time helped lead to the Modern Age.
With "Luther and the Reformation", Steves set about crafting a documentary that highlighted the historic, economic, and social context of the Reformation. His goal was to produce a special that could be used as a resource for congregations and have wider appeal for TV audiences.
Steves' "Luther and the Reformation" is airing throughout 2017. It's also available to watch online at www.elca.org/ricksteves, along with resources for hosting congregational screenings of the film.