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44. Ibid., Official Common Statement by the Lutheran World Federation and the Roman Catholic Church, 43ff.

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93. It is important to distinguish between Luther’s theology and Lutheran theology and, above all, between Luther’s theology and the doctrine of the Lutheran churches as expressed in their confessional writings. This doctrine is the primary reference point for the ecumenical dialogues. Still, it appropriate here to concentrate on Luther’s theology because of the anniversary commemoration of 31 October 1517.

Martin Luther’s struggle with God drove and defined his whole life

89. Jan Willebrands, “Lecture to the 5th Assembly of the Lutheran World Federation, on 15 July 1970,” in  (6 September 1970), 766.
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65. To promote lay participation in the services, the reformers wrote hymns and published hymnbooks. These played an enduring role in Lutheran spirituality and became part of the treasured heritage of the whole church.


The question, How can I find a gracious God

Lutheranism has its roots in the work of Martin Luther, who sought to reform the Western Church to what he considered a more biblical foundation.
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177. The question arises of how the specificity of the tasks of the ordained are rightly set in relationship with the universal priesthood of all baptized believers. The study document states, “Catholics and Lutherans are in agreement that all the baptized who believe in Christ share in the priesthood of Christ and are thus commissioned to ‘proclaim the mighty acts of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light’ (1 Pet 2:9). Hence no member lacks a part to play in the mission of the whole body” ( 273).

Jun 01, 2009 · Reception of Doctrine as a Methodological Issue in Early Lutheranism Piotr J
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88. The Council of Trent, although to a large extent a response to the Protestant Reformation, did not condemn individuals or communities but specific doctrinal positions. Because the doctrinal decrees of the Council were largely in response to what it perceived to be Protestant errors, it shaped a polemical environment between Protestants and Catholics that tended to define Catholicism over and against Protestantism. In this approach, it mirrored many of the Lutheran confessional writings, which also defined Lutheran positions by opposition. The decisions of the Council of Trent laid the basis for the formation of Catholic identity up to the Second Vatican Council.

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89. By the end of the third gathering of the Council of Trent, it had to be soberly acknowledged that the unity of the church in the Western world had been shattered. New church structures developed in the Lutheran territories. The Peace of Augsburg of 1555 at first secured stable political relationships, but it could not prevent the great European conflict of the seventeenth century, the Thirty Years’ War (1618–1648). The establishment of secular nation-states with strong confessionalistic delineations remained a burden inherited from the Reformation period.

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76. In 1552, after a conspiracy of princes, a new war against the Emperor began that forced him to flee from Austria. This led to a peace treaty between Lutheran princes and King Ferdinand. Thus, the attempt to eradicate “the Lutheran heresy” through military means ultimately failed.

6/1/2009 · Reception of Doctrine as a Methodological Issue in Early Lutheranism Piotr J

90. While the Council of Trent largely defined Catholic relations with Lutherans for several centuries, its legacy must now be viewed through the lens of the actions of the Second Vatican Council (1962–1965). This Council made it possible for the Catholic Church to enter the ecumenical movement and leave behind the charged polemic atmosphere of the post-Reformation era. The Dogmatic Constitution on the Church (), the Decree on Ecumenism (), the Declaration on Religious Freedom (), and the Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation () are foundational documents for Catholic ecumenism. Vatican II, while affirming that the Church of Christ subsists in the Catholic Church, also acknowledged, “many elements of sanctification and of truth are found outside of its visible structure. These elements, as gifts belonging to the Church of Christ, are forces impelling toward catholic unity” ( 8). There was a positive appreciation of what Catholics share with other Christian churches such as the creeds, baptism, and the Scriptures. A theology of ecclesial communion affirmed that Catholics are in a real, if imperfect, communion with all who confess Jesus Christ and are baptized ( 2).

Lutheranism - Pietism: During the period of orthodox dominance, some Lutheran theologians argued that Christianity was not so much a system of doctrine as a …

91. Since the sixteenth century, basic convictions of both Martin Luther and Lutheran theology have been a matter of controversy between Catholics and Lutherans. Ecumenical dialogues and academic research have analyzed these controversies and attempted to overcome them by identifying the different terminologies, different thought structures, and different concerns that do not necessarily exclude each other.