2017 – 500 years of Reformation
On October 31, 1517 Martin Luther posted his famous 95 theses on the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg. The door functioned as a bulletin board for various announcements related to academic and church affairs. Luther’s posting on the door of the Wittenberg castle church were the prelude to Reformation, one of the central events in European history.
His religious, social, political and cultural affects gained historical importance globally. The Reformation encouraged the development of an image of humanity that was based on a new Christian concept of freedom. Therefore the formation of autonomy and the question of conscience for each individual person gained center stage.
The Reformation crucially influenced enlightenment and basic human rights, just like modern democracy. Luther’s translation of the Bible into German was essential for the growth of a uniform written German language and opened a door to education for a vast part of population that had had no access to it before. There is hardly any sphere of life that wasn’t touched by the Reformation.
On October 31, 2017, the 500th anniversary of Reformation was celebrated. This anniversary is preceded by the Luther decade that started in 2008 with a special theme for each year. In cooperation with many organizations from states, culture, tourism and church, themes of the Reformation and the present are being connected. The anniversary of the Reformation is shaped by openness, freedom and ecumenism.