'Reformation' remembered and renewed with Storymobile
for fifth centenary
A mobile exhibition celebrating the 500th anniversary of the Reformation is arriving in England on 21 February. It will exhibit in Liverpool on 21 February, Cambridge on 23 February, and London on 25 February in Trafalgar Square, accompanied by seminar discussions, choral performances, and ecumenical services in Lutheran tradition and using Bach’s cantatas.
Launched on 3 December 2016, the ‘European Roadmap’ is taking its Storymobile to all corners of Europe, to help people across the Continent discover the significance of the Reformation for today. Martin Luther’s 95 Theses, first circulated on 31 October 1517, were intended to challenge specific abuses in the church. The thinking that flowed from them proceeded to challenge deeply held assumptions about religion and belief and triggered far-reaching changes in politics, society and culture. But at the heart of the Reformation was the message that salvation is God’s gift in Jesus Christ, and the desire for that good news to transform people’s hearts and relationships, in the church and in society.
Revd Torbjørn Holt, Rector of the Norwegian Church in London and Chair of the Council of Lutheran Churches, said “In a world of growing political tension, the Churches in the UK will this year mark the 500 years since the start of the Reformation. Luther’s publication of his 95 theses triggered a chain reaction of events, theological and political, which changed the church and the world profoundly, for good and bad. We look forward to reflecting on this history together with our Christian brothers and sisters, on a path from past conflict to future communion.”
Cambridge was the cradle of the English Reformation where ideas were imported and discussed by academics at the Church of St Edward King & Martyr on Peas Hill where, at 10am on 23 February we too will meet to discuss “Reformation: then and now”, led by a talk from Dr Rowan Williams (former Archbishop of Canterbury) with responses from the Anglican and Lutheran traditions. These ideas were carried by significant movements of people, including seamen from Northern Europe who settled in Liverpool – then as now a melting pot of diversity and a strong example of ecumenical collaboration overcoming sectarian conflict. Lutherans helped to rebuild London after the Great Fire of 1666, where they opened their first church, protected by the Court. Living alongside the Church of England, Lutherans continue to work closely with their ecumenical colleagues and will be worshipping together at St Martin in the Fields after a day of choral performance in Trafalgar Square.
Rt Rev Nick Baines, Bishop of Leeds, said “The Reformation changed the world and we live with its consequences today. The European Reformation Roadmap gives us space to reflect on it. It also allows us to welcome colleagues from Germany who bring their unique perspectives and celebrations. A unique opportunity that I hope many will take.”
The Storymobile tells the story of Reformation across Europe and down the centuries. Using a variety of communications methods today just as Luther exploited the social media of his time (print and pamphlets), it will gather in stories from the communities it visits as to how they understand and interpret reformation, physically on the day or in advance via https://www.facebook.com/counciloflutheranchurches/. This kaleidoscope of stories, images and videos, relating to national reform or individual renewal, from history or the future, will be gathered and displayed in Berlin this summer. All are invited to visit the Storymobile - There will be the opportunity to contribute your stories, hear more about reformation in history and the present, and join together in worship.
Liverpool - Williamson Square, L1 1EQ from 10.00 to 17:00 on Tuesday 21 February 2017.
Cambridge - Parkers Piece, CB1 1NA from 10:00 to 17:00 on Thursday 23 February 2017.
London - Trafalgar Square, WC2N 5DN from 9:00am to 15:00 on Saturday 25 February 2017.
See www.r2017.org for more information and a blog as the Storymobile visits different Stations.