October 31st is Reformation Day. In Germany it is a public holiday for Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia.
Our offices in Germany are located in Thuringia, so they will have the day off on Monday.
Reformation Day commemorates something that happened 499 years ago at the church building in the picture above.
The church building above is the Wittenberg Castle Church. In the picture you can see people gathered around a door on the side of the church building.
Here is a picture from the Wittenberg 1517 360 degree panorama by Yadegar Asisi that opened last weekend in Wittenberg. See: Wittenberg 360 Luther 1517
In this scene we have Martin Luther explaining his 95 Theses that he had posted on the doors of the Castle Church.
These are not the wooden doors that Martin Luther posted his theses on, but are hung in the same place. The wooden doors were burned in a fire during the Pomeranian War in 1760. The current doors were hung in 1858.
The posting of the 95 Theses by Martin Luther is thought by many to be the starting point of the Protestant Reformation. It was a defining point in Luther’s life, and was a catalyst to bring together many who were already working toward reforming the Catholic church.
However, what was truly needed was a restoration of the church of the New Testament, not a reformation of an existing institution.
We see this happening in England a century later with the Puritans and the Separatists. The Puritans wanted reform and the Separatists wanted a complete separation and a new beginning.
The Protestant Reformation and the Puritan reforms helped open up the doors for the Restoration Movement in America several centuries later.
Castle Church Doors – For a little more history and more pictures of the doors
Reformation Day – Luther in Eisenach
Reformation Day II – Wartburg and Jena
Reformation Day III – A visit to Wartburg
Reformation Day IV – St. Michael’s in Jena