Thu | Nov 23, 2017

Letter of the Day | Time for a new Lutheran Reformation?

Published:Saturday | October 21, 2017 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Where have we reached after 500 years when Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses of the church door of the Castle Church in Wittenburg, Germany? Is it time for someone else to nail another theses on another church door?

In the 1920s, Harry Emerson Fosdick was one of the most celebrated preachers in the United States. He was an influential interpreter of religion, and basically a good all-round rebel. In May 1922, Fosdick preached a sermon titled 'Shall the fundamentalists win?', where he challenged some of the basic tenets of theology: the Virgin Birth, the inerrancy of scripture, plus some other things. The backlash was explosive, and Fosdick was forced to resign from his pulpit.

 

Time for conversation

 

Today, we are far way from the world of Martin Luther and Harry Emerson Fosdick, so don't you think it is time to sit around the table and have a conversation. Instead of being against each other, could we look at coming together in our theology and ministry practices, and so encourage and build up people rather than label them and knock them down?

The Reformation of 1517 was a world-changing event. The Church was involved in every aspect of life, can we say the same today? Do we need a new Reformation? Who will nail their theses on my church door? Maybe we are too busy arguing, too busy looking for faults and flaws instead of healing wounds and binding up the broken.

As we commemorate 500 years of the Protestant Reformation, let us not hide behind hatred and suspicion but come to the table with love, understanding, and mutual respect for all.

In the words of Martin Luther, "Here I stand, I can do no other, so help me, God."

MARGARET FOWLER

revdocfowler@gmail.com