Nearly 500 years ago, Martin Luther provided important stimuli for wide-ranging reforms in the church. His theology had an effect on many churches - by being implemented, causing modifications or through debates on it.
Nowadays, Lutheran churches can be found in varied historical, cultural, social and economic contexts. This is a challenge to the communion between them. The 500th anniversary of the nailing of the theses in Wittenberg offers the Lutheran World Federation and its member churches a special opportunity for studying Martin Luther's theology together. Each year during the Luther Decade up to 2017, the LWF Center Wittenberg will be offering two seminars. Theologians from member churches around the world will be invited to Wittenberg for two weeks to work on issues of Lutheran theology with professors from universities in Germany and abroad. The aims are:
- to understand the key statements in Martin Luther's writings,
- to understand the circumstances and relationships in which Martin Luther lived and
- to relate Luther's insights in a constructive way to the contexts in which the participants live.
This is to take place in response to a fundamental need repeatedly expressed by the LWF member churches - to deepen their understanding of the Lutheran identity, also in relation to their specific contexts and in ecumenical openness to other confessions. The knowledge of one's own tradition is a prerequisite for a fruitful, beneficial dialogue with other confessions, faiths and worldviews. It provides a constructive basis for self-confidence and an appropriate stand which is not susceptible to apologetics or fundamentalism.
The seminars are always conducted in English and take place each year in March and November. Working sessions alternate with periods of private study. Various programs in the evenings and at the weekends provide a possibility of gaining a balanced view of the church situation in Germany. The structure of the seminars can be found here. Short statements of participants of previous seminars you can find under "Previous Seminars".
The Wittenberg College offers very good conditions for accommodation, board and study right in the middle of the Luther town. p to 20 participants are invited each time and an effort is made to establish a balance between churches from the global south and north, as well as Gender justice and youth participation are taken into account. The member churches are requested to cover their share of the costs according to the fair membership contribution to the LWF.
Appointments until 2017