Commemorate 500 Years of the Reformation at Regent College
After five centuries, the Reformation is still shaping us.
The years surrounding October 31, 1517—the day that Martin Luther nailed his Ninety-Five Theses to the Castle Church Door in Wittenberg—were some of the most pivotal in Western history. During this period, men and women put the fates of their cities and countries (not to mention their own lives) on the line for their convictions; brilliant thinkers produced some of the church’s most rigorous and impassioned theology; and cultural forces were set in motion that continue to mold the way we think and worship.
In recognition of this historic anniversary, Regent College is excited to announce 500 Years of the Reformation—a yearlong commemoration of the events that gave rise to the Protestant church. This series of discussions, courses, and public lectures will offer diverse opportunities to investigate this complex period and discern its implications for the church and the world today.
“Regent’s identity as an evangelical Protestant college has been very clear and consistent throughout our entire institutional history,” said President Jeffrey Greenman. “It is true that we have taken a transdenominational approach to our life together, embracing a ‘mere Christianity’ centred on the central, historic, orthodox convictions of the Christian church, and seeking to avoid narrowness or triumphalism. We have always been eager also to learn from other Christian traditions. Yet we have remained confident throughout in the importance of our Protestant stance and its main tenets, and therefore Regent’s theological tradition understands the Reformation as something properly to celebrate—a tragically necessary movement undertaken by people who sought to champion the power and centrality of the Gospel.”
Paul Spilsbury, Academic Dean, commented: “The Reformation anniversary year is a great opportunity for our students, alumni, and our friends in the wider community to explore with us the meaning and implications of the Reformation and our rich heritage as Protestants. In keeping with Regent’s strong interdisciplinary focus, we will be looking at the Reformation from many angles—not only its history and theology, but also its contributions to the arts, to biblical interpretation, and to the role of lay people in the world.”
Planned events (with more to come) include:
- Dr. Randall C. Zachman's presentation on the use of images in sixteenth-century worship, life, and piety, "When Should Christians Break Stuff? Passing from the Image to the Prototype" (Feb. 24 @ 7 pm; Prof. Iwan Russell-Jones as respondent; presented in partnership with Vancouver School of Theology)
- Two lectures by renowned Luther scholar Dr. Ron Rittgers, "Secularization through Solace: Reflections on the Reformation and Modern Identity and "The Radical Prophet Martin Luther" (Mar. 16 @ 11 am & 7 pm)
- A series of Reformation-oriented summer school courses (learn more)
- A guided tour of Lutheran Germany with Dr. Iain Provan (details)
- A special Reformation Day Chapel Service with President Jeff Greenman (Oct. 31 @ 11 am)
We hope you'll join us as we take time this year to examine the legacy of the Reformation and its implications for the church—past, present, and future.