Upstate educators partner with community clergy for Reformation 500 series

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By Erika Hollis
The Carolinian

Religious leaders have partnered with USC Upstate educators to present a series of lectures, discussions, and concerts in commemoration of the Reformation’s 500th anniversary.

“Reformation 500” began Thursday. Free events related to the Reformation will be held on campus and at local churches until November.

European history lovers are invited to enjoy talks from Upstate and Furman professors and religious leaders. A panel discussion with community religious leaders will take place in November, and concerts are scheduled throughout October and November.

Furman University Professor of History, Timothy Fehler, Ph.D. gave the opening talk Thursday on “Piety, Politics, and Print: The Early Protestant Reformation”.

“In history, we should look at all aspects, not just one or two,” Fehler said. “It helps us understand how everything worked together in our past.”

 

Carol Loar, Ph.D., Upstate’s Department Chair of History, Political Science, Philosophy and American Studies, explained the Reformation in an interview.

REFORMATION500-E.Hollis

Dr. Carol Loar

Q: Who was Martin Luther?
A: An early 16th century monk who sought to reform the Catholic Church from the inside out, got married to a former nun who was 20 years younger than him and had children as well. Also, Luther started his own denomination before he passed away.

Q: Why is Martin Luther and the Reformation important parts of history?
A: Luther opened the door for new Christian denominations and brought democracy into the new Christian churches. This gave way for people in the Church and churches not having to rely on their priests for everything. The Reformation 500 event is important. It transformed medieval 16th century Europe at all levels and parts of society.
For example, the printing press gave the poor people in Wittenberg, Germany a way to understand the Bible by translating Latin into German. Also, the printing press made life easier for the illiterate people in Wittenberg and surrounding towns, as it was easier to make pictures as well, so that they could tell what the Bible story was saying from the pictures.

Q: When did you start planning the lecture series called Reformation 500?
A: Dr. McCormick and I started talking about it a year and a half ago. We are proud of the fact that we got the local congregations involved as well. In February of 2017 is when we started putting everything together.

 

The schedule of events for the rest of the Reformation 500 series, free and open to the public, is listed. More information can be found at uscupstate.edu/reformation.

Sept. 11 Constitution Day Lecture: “The Protestant Origins of America’s Unwritten Constitution: A Guide for Civic Engagement”

Note: Postponed, to be rescheduled

  • Jane Calvert, Associate Professor of History, Director/Editor, The John Dickinson Writings Project
  • USC Upstate, Campus Life Center Ballroom. 6:30 p.m.

Sept. 17 “Here I Stand”: Martin Luther and the Reformation: Luther as a Young Man

  • Dr. Rob McCormick, Professor of History, USC Upstate
  • William L. Arthur Center, First Presbyterian Church, 5 p.m.

Sept. 24 “Here I Stand”: Martin Luther and the Reformation: The Big Event

  • Dr. Rob McCormick, Professor of History, USC Upstate
  • William L. Arthur Center, First Presbyterian Church, 5 p.m.

Oct. 1: Sermon: “Sola Scriptura”

  • First Presbyterian Church, 8:45 a.m., 11 a.m.

Oct. 1: “Here I Stand”: Martin Luther and the Reformation: the Reformation Deepens and Spreads

  • Dr. Rob McCormick, Professor of History USC Upstate
  • William L. Arthur Center, First Presbyterian Church, 5 p.m.

Oct. 2: Screening of Rick Steves’ “Martin Luther and the Reformation” followed by discussion led by “Martin Luther” and “Katherina von Bora”

  • St. John’s Lutheran, 6:30 p.m.

Oct. 3: Book group: Lyndal Roper’s Martin Luther: Renegade & Prophet

  • First Presbyterian Church, 10:30 a.m. or 7 p.m.

Oct. 8: Sermon: “Sola Fide”

  • First Presbyterian Church, 8:45 a.m., 11 a.m.

Oct. 8:  “Here I Stand”: Martin Luther and the Reformation: The Second Generation of Reformers

  • Dr. Rob McCormick, Professor of History USC Upstate
  • William L. Arthur Center, First Presbyterian Church, 5 p.m.

Oct. 15: Sermon: “Sola Gratia”

  • First Presbyterian Church, 8:45 a.m., 11 a.m.

Oct. 15: “Here I Stand”: Martin Luther and the Reformation: Luther’s Legacy

  • Dr. Rob McCormick, Professor of History USC Upstate
  • William L. Arthur Center, First Presbyterian Church, 5 p.m.

Oct. 16: Reformation and Counter-Reformation in the Catholic Church

  • Fr. Jay Scott Newman (St. Mary’s Catholic Church)
  • St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church, 6:30 p.m.

Oct. 22: Sermon “Sola Christus”

  • First Presbyterian Church, 8:45 a.m., 11 a.m.

Oct. 22: Combined choir concert: “Bach’s Reformation Cantata”

  • First Presbyterian Church, 6 p.m.

Oct. 23: “Luther and the Question of Women”

  • Dr. Carol Loar, Professor of History, USC Upstate
  • St. John’s Lutheran, 6:30 p.m.

Oct. 27 “Martin Luther, Judaism, and the Holocaust”

  • Dr. Rob McCormick, Professor of History, USC Upstate
  • Temple B’nai Israel, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 28-29: Reformation weekend – multiple churches

Oct. 29 Sermon: “Soli Deo Gloria”

  • First Presbyterian Church, 8:45 a.m., 11 a.m.

Oct. 29: American Guild of Organists: Reformation Recital

  • St. John’s Lutheran, 4 p.m.

Oct. 30: “The Radical Reformation: Coexistence, Persecution, and Martyrdom”

  • Dr. Timothy Fehler, Professor of History, Furman University
  • USC Upstate, CLC Ballroom, 6:30 p.m.

Nov. 6:  “The Great Awakening and the American Revolution in the South”

  • Michael Scoggins, Research Director, Southern Revolutionary War Institute, York.
  • USC Upstate, 7 p.m.  

Nov. 14: “What’s next for the Reformation?”

  • Panel discussion: Bishop Herman Yoos, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America; Rev. Gordan Raynal, Senior Presbyter, Foothills Presbytery; Bishop Andrew Waldo, Episcopal Diocese of Upper SC; Fr. Jay Scott Newman, St. Mary’s Catholic Church
  • St. John’s Lutheran, 6:30 p.m.

Nov. 16: A Reformation Concert

  • Spartanburg Festival Chorus; Converse Symphony Orchestra
  • Converse College, Twichell Auditorium 7:30 p.m.
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