The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Study Luther's thoughts where Luther lived

Study programs and tours begin this year at the new ELCA Wittenberg [Germany] Center. Launched by the ELCA Division for Global Mission in cooperation with several Wittenberg agencies and other ELCA divisions, the center will challenge participants to reflect on Martin Luther's thoughts in relation to how they live their faith today.

Director for the center is Dean Bard, former pastor of American Church in Berlin. Bard was commissioned for the post in January during services at Kountze Memorial Lutheran Church, Omaha, Neb. He began work the following week with offices at the Evangelical Academy next door to the Castle Church in Wittenberg.

The center is an outgrowth of the refurbishing of Luther sites following Germany's reunification. Leucorea (Wittenberg) University, where Luther taught, reopened in 1996 after an $11.9 million renovation. The university, virtually next door to Philip Melanchthon's home, was founded in 1502 with 416 students and became world-renowned.

The Luther Museum at Lutherhalle where Martin and Katie Luther lived, the preacher's seminary, the city of Lutherstadt Wittenberg and local churches also will serve as settings for the center's programs.

"Developing the kinds of quality programs that church members deserve will take some time," Bard said, "but in consultation with the German churches, we will launch pilot projects and announce some continuing education opportunities yet this year." In time the center plans to offer study tours, international conferences and cross-cultural programs that involve ELCA members and people from companion churches worldwide.


Ron Warmbier

Ron Warmbier

Posted at 1:38 pm (U.S. Eastern) 4/23/2008

I'm interested in participating in a tour of "Lutherland", Germany i.e. Sights and locations prominent in the life of Martin Luther. Wittenberg Castle,  Birthplace, school, home, etc. Do you know of any tours being set up for 2008 or 2009?


Ron Warmbier


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Embracing diversity