Reformation 500

             2017 marks the 500th anniversary of what may well be the single most important and influential event in the world in nearly 2000 years. The Reformation began on October 31, 1517 when Martin Luther nailed his 95 Thesis (questions about certain abuses within Roman Catholicism) to the church door in Wittenberg, Germany. This began a series of events that would reshape Christianity, politics and education which would rock the world.

            Dr. Luther would be joined by others who seized the opportunity to make a break with Roman Catholicism which, through the Holy Roman Empire ruled over almost all of western civilization at the time.

            In this article, I want to remind you of this important anniversary of this world changing event. I want to introduce the people whose spiritual ancestors were behind this event. We are the Lutherans.

            As a lifelong Lutheran myself, it’s always been very clear to me that Lutheran’s may be the most misunderstood of all the denominations. Roman Catholics usually label us Protestants. The protestants say “you are just like the Roman Catholics, aren’t you? Though we do have much in common with Christians in every denomination, the truth is that we really don’t fit in any of the boxes in which people like to throw us. We are unique in our theology which is always centered upon Jesus Christ and him crucified for the sins of the world (1 Corinthians 2:2).

            The 500th anniversary of the Reformation would be a great time for you to get to know the events of the Reformation, Martin Luther (who started it all) and your local Lutheran’s who continue the Reformation tradition of faithfully teaching the Holy Scripture as the only authoritative source for Christian faith and life, and proclaiming that Christ alone has set us free from the condemnation our sins deserve by dying on the cross for us.

            To this end, I plan to write an article for each edition of this newspaper from now through next year hitting specifically on the topics of Martin Luther and the Reformation. I would also like to invite you to a special class called “Lutheranism 101” where we will discuss the basic teachings of the Lutheran faith. This class will be held at Shepherd of the Bay Lutheran Church located at 12851 Perdido St. in Lillian (right across the street from the city park) There will no pressure to join anything or even to believe what is taught, just the opportunity to hear what we believe and take part in a free and open discussion about us Lutheran’s, Martin Luther, or our theology. This class will be on Tuesdays evenings beginning on November 15th at 6:30. Everyone is invited! Refreshments will be provided for all.

            You are also invited to stop by Shepherd of the Bay at any time to speak with the Pastor about anything.  And of course you are always welcome to join us on Sunday mornings at 9:00 am for our regular Bible Class and 10:00 for our Divine Service based on the traditional liturgies that have been used within Christendom for the past 1900 years.

Peace be with you all,

Pastor Paul Leigeber