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500 Years of the Reformation

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Introduction

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. Through a series of discussions, courses, and public lectures, we will offer diverse opportunities to help you investigate this complex period and discern its implications for 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.”

To find out more, browse the Courses and Events tabs on the navigation bar to the right. Keep an eye on this site! More events will continue to be announced as the year progresses. 

Courses

Standing Where Luther (And Calvin) Stood (BIBL 605)

IAIN PROVAN  | May 15–May 26
Full Details

As the 500th anniversary of the Reformation draws near, many question the ongoing utility and legitimacy of a typically Protestant approach to Scripture. But is the questioning valid? Join Dr. Provan as he surveys the history of biblical interpretation in light of key Reformation concerns and proposes that our own approach, even as 21st rather than 16th-century Bible-readers, should remain “reformed."


Walking Where Luther Walked: A Guided Tour of Lutheran Germany (BIBL 569)

IAIN PROVAN | GERMANY | Jun 5–Jun 14
Full Details

The 1517 publication of Martin Luther’s 95 Theses in Wittenberg is widely understood as the event that sparked the Reformation. This summer, mark that world-changing event with this guided tour of Reformation Germany, hosted by Professor Iain Provan.


REFORMATION THEOLOGY AFTER THE REVOLUTION (THEO 564)

MICHAEL ALLEN | Jul 10–14
Full Details

Recent years have seen calls for the end of Protestantism, arguments that the Reformation is over, and laments over its alleged contributions to individualism and secularism. As the 500th anniversary of the Reformation draws near, is it possible to retrieve and reclaim the Reformation as a blessing to the church and a return to the catholic gospel? Join us as we consider, weigh, and benefit from the insights of the reformers after the revolution.


THE REFORMATION: THEN & NOW, FROM ABOVE & BELOW (HIST 525)

MARK NOLL & MARK NOLL VENABLES | Jul 17–28
Full Details

The Protestant Reformation changed the church and the world. Explore the personalities, conflicts, events, and outcomes of both the Protestant Reformation and the Catholic renewal movement of the same era. Examine how these Reformations affected the people of their time and consider how they might illuminate and assist Christian efforts in our world today.

Events

  • Sep
    9
    Saturday, 10:00AM
    Uniting Heaven and Earth: The Reformation After 500 Years
    With Hans Boersma

    A weekend lecture with Dr. Hans Boersma at St. Mark's College

  • Oct
    5
    Thursday, 12:00PM
    Lunchtime lecture with Dr. Evan Kreider

    A special talk by UBC Professor Emeritus of Music

  • Oct
    31
    Tuesday, 7:00PM
    Five Hundred Years Later: The Clarity of Scripture Reassessed: Public Lecture and Book Launch
    With Iain Provan

    Five Hundred Years Later: The Clarity of Scripture Reassessed: Public Lecture and Book Launch

  • Nov
    10
    Friday, 7:30PM
    Gloria! A Concert Celebrating the Reformation 500th Anniversary

    Gloria! A Concert Celebrating the Reformation 500th Anniversary

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