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Faith of our Fathers Lutheran Colloquium

Will No One Rid Me Of This Troublesome Priest?

September 11, 2007 Length: 55:46

"'Will No One Rid Me Of This Troublesome Priest?' The Church, Augustinian Anxieties and Lutheran Conclusions" - a talk by Deacon A. Gregory Roeber,
Professor of early modern history and religious studies at Penn State. Formerly with Lutheran Church Missouri Synod.
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Transcript Transcript

“Will No One Rid Me Of This Troublesome Priest?” The Church, Augustinian Anxieties and Lutheran Conclusions

Anyone familiar with these lines attributed to Henry II of England may also recall that the sixteenth-century Lutheran Reformers were especially bitter about bishops who had become more interested in acting like princes than shepherds of souls. In responding to Roman criticism of Article IV of the Augsburg Confession on Justification, Philip Melanchthon seized instinctively in >

The Apology of the Augsburg Confession upon Augustine’s Epistle against the Donatists (concerning the Unity of the Church, VI, 15,2) to ask “The question is, where is the church? What then shall we do? Shall we seek it in our own words or in the words of its head, our Lord Jesus Christ?” (AAC 168: 400) The instinct to ask this crucial question, and to do so consciously in communion with the Bishop of Hippo surely reveals something important about the intent of the Reformers to confess the faith of the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. In the original A.C. the saving faith that God grants as a free gift is only obtained, so the article on “ministry in the Church” (De Ministerio Ecclesiastico) asserts, through the ministry and sacraments. In Article VII on “The Church” the Reformers again signaled their indebtedness to Augustine by singling out Donatism as heresy, insisting that Grace is conveyed even by the actions of sinful bishops and priests.

The deeper question about the Lutheran understanding of the Church I wish to focus upon here today, however, is slightly different, and it is this: was the Church for Lutherans, because of their profound indebtedness to Augustine of Hippo’s tutelage of the Latin West understood primarily as visible Eucharistic assembly? That the answer was a resounding “yes” for Augustine is clear from his writings, for the presence of the Holy Spirit among humanity was only to be found in the Mysteries of the Church. That this focus remains the alpha and omega in discussions of the Church has not only recently been reaffirmed for the separated West by Pope Benedict XVI’s reiteration of the treatise he authored with the approval of Pope John Paul II’s in Dominus Jesus. All forms of Protestantism are referred to as “ecclesial communities” but not “Churches” because they lack this self-understanding. Just so, fifty years ago this very month, Orthodox representatives to the Faith and Order Study Conference at Oberlin Ohio confessed the same identity. For the Orthodox, faith, order and worship had to be “outwardly safeguarded by the reality of the unbroken succession of bishops . . .This means that the uncompromised fullness of the Church requires the preservation of both (emphasis mine) its Episcopal structure and sacramental life.” [1]

But I think the answer must be “no” where the Lutheran Symbols are concerned. It is the “both-and” quality I want to argue, at least some Lutherans quickly, and intentionally, lost. Somewhat like Augustine himself, the Lutheran Confessions from the beginning hesitated on the visible identity of the Church, falling back too quickly into what became a “default” position that emphasized a distinction between “outward” and “inward” identity. Luther himself early on indicated his sympathy for this dichotomous way of thinking, or as one scholar has put it, his penchant for being a “strangely unliteralistic literalist.” His Torgau sermon on the Descent into Hell of 1533 allowed him to praise paintings or any other “external” means to convey the centrality of Christ’s victory over Satan and the power of death. But the key conclusion for Luther remained invisible and internal: “If I only hold on to that which I am to believe concerning Christ, and which is represented by such images.”[2]

This ambivalence in Augustine’s own thought—the difficulty of reconciling the material and the spiritual world, has been widely acknowledged; indeed Augustine himself identified it as a major struggle in his life. J.N.D. Kelly’s summary of Augustine’s tilting with the Donatists noted long ago the bishop of Hippo’s primary accusation that the Donatists had violated the law of charity by seeking to cast out the “unworthy” from Eucharistic fellowship. But at the same time, the longer he struggled with his opponents, the more Augustine seemed to become infected by their thought. In seeking to affirm the “spotless Bride of Christ” identity of the Church as envisioned in the Letter to the Ephesians, Augustine fatally conceded that an “essential Church” existed alongside of the “apparent” Church characterized by people who, because of their sin, were in actual fact separated from “the invisible union of love.” This disastrous concession, as Kelly points out, began the long and dreary history of attempts to discover who “real” Christians, are, even “identifying Christ’s body with the fixed number of the elect known to God alone . . .[and] if the latter doctrine is taken seriously the notion of the institutional Church ceases to have any validity.” [3]

What saved Augustine was his connection and willing submission to a much broader patristic consensus. His declaration that he would not believe the Gospel itself absent the authority of the universal Church must be read, not as an exercise of pitting “Tradition” over “Scripture” but liturgically. His homage to his mother ends by asking that all his readers remember her during the Divine Liturgy as she had asked him to do—revealing the centrality of the Eucharist as the key to his understanding of the linkage between the Church in and beyond time and space. He remained convinced of the possibility of the soul’s ascent to contemplation in this life since the human person retains, however damaged, the image of the Trinity. Despite the fact that at times Augustine’s language about the Eucharist can seem rather vague and “symbolic”—a mere “external”—he remained firmly committed to the conviction that the sacramental life of the Liturgy is indispensable for any experience of the divine. Even his oft-cited struggle with the theophanies of Scripture he modified later in life to admit that miraculous cures at the shrines of saints and martyrs that joined the visible and invisible were testified to by the Church’s broader consensus and witness. [4]

By the sixteenth century, unfortunately, Augustine’s connections to the patristic consensus of the first five centuries had become attenuated, despite real attempts among Augustinians after his day to reform the Church. In their construction of the Symbols, the Lutheran reformers for their part signaled their ambivalence about the visible, Eucharistic identity of the Church in the language of Article VII that in many respects compromises the integrity of the bookend articles on “The Ministry” and “The Church” (V, VI and VIII) of the A.C. This infamous “it is enough” the “satis est” : “for the true unity of the Christian church that the Gospel be preached in conformity with a pure understanding of it and that the sacraments be administered in accordance with the divine Word.” is tied to Ephesians 4:4,5 where the unity of the mystical Body and the Spirit is located in “one Lord, one faith, one baptism.” But since the reformers had already departed in their excisions of the western Liturgy and other sacramental rites from those visible, historic witnesses of the Church, it is not clear that the preservation of a sacramental life even from the outset, characterized their understanding of the Church. Was it, in short, just the “meddlesome” that was to be eliminated, or the priest, in favor of a reception in the heart of the promises of Gospel? At least in some Lutheran circles, the reliance upon the invisible workings of the Spirit has defined the answer to this question. “No form of worship, of doctrine, or of church administration” marks the Church, not “the infallibility of its doctrine, the soundness of its worship, or by unbroken Episcopal succession . . .our hope is always based on his promise and not on human accomplishments.”[5]

In the interest of full disclosure, I need to explain that unlike many converts to Orthodox Christianity from the Lutheran confessions, I began my journey as a Roman Catholic, and as a student for the priesthood. The focus and insistence upon the Eucharistic nature of the Church is, therefore, an understanding I absorbed from my earliest days. Moreover, I was only able to be a confessing Lutheran to the extent that I believed (erroneously as it turned out) that Lutherans also were, because of their dogged insistence upon the communicatio idiomatum, the Solid Declaration’s ferocious defense of the genus majestaticum in Article VII and refusal to share the Lord’s Supper with the Reformed, also primarily, in their self understanding, a Eucharistic community. I had stumbled by the time I was a college student over the papal claims for universal authority to be mater et magistrix omnium ecclesiarum as I read the history of the first 800 years of the Church’s life. My inability to find in the early history of the Church or the fathers any notion of a “treasury of merits” that could be applied by the papacy to the souls in Purgatory or to remit partial punishments of those on earth followed rather inevitably. These genuinely unwanted conclusions led me into a profound personal crisis that resulted in a twenty-year sojourn in Lutheranism. I stayed in that communion not simply because it had been since the 1530s the confession of my paternal family. Rather, I remained convinced until experience taught me otherwise, of the opinion of the Catholic priest (himself a convert) who recommended me for seminary: that the Lutherans remained at one and the same time, the most bitter enemies of Rome, but also the Protestants nearest in theology to the historic Church of the West. In some important respects—such as their insistence upon the truth of uncreated, unmerited Grace as the very gift and life of a mysterious and “hidden” God in and toward his Creation, in their ringing affirmation of the transformative work of Grace in Holy Baptism, Lutherans do seem remarkably “Orthodox-Catholic” in profoundly important ways. But it was, for me, always the centrality of the Lord’s Supper that seemed important in the reception of the freely-given gift and good of Christ himself. But is it really that central?

To return to the central question: was the Church, in the Lutheran understanding, primarily a community called out by God from among the nations into a Eucharistic assembly? Or, was it a study group gathered around a quasi-rabbinic exposition of texts to be heard and taken to heart? To put the questions in Orthodox context, does the Lutheran ecclesial community find its identity, its self-understanding in the Liturgy of the Catechumens, or is this a Church that finds its Baptismal promise expressed and fulfilled in the Liturgy of the Faithful?

The answer to that central question leads me to the title I chose—what to do with troublesome priests—and especially bishops when they go wrong—and whether breaking communion with them is ever –to use a piquant sense of the word Lutherans like to deploy, “justified’? Even if we concede the sixteenth century necessity of a rupture of communion, did Lutherans intend to follow Saint Ignatius’s counsel to the Church at Ephesus: “Give ear to the bishop and the presbytery with an undivided mind, breaking one bread, which is the medicine of immortality, the antidote against death, enabling us to live forever in Jesus Christ”?[6]

I think the answer is “no.” My answer comes from years of reflection on the dilemma that faced the Lutheran reformers of the sixteenth century as well as the past four years spent in retreats with Lutheran pastors and laity who are struggling with the question of just what, today, characterizes the “Lutheran Church.” Let us concede that the sixteenth century Reformers, in admitting that they preferred to retain the historic episcopacy, were confronted with a dilemma for which there was no easy solution—indeed for which there has never been—and perhaps in God’s providence cannot be—any easy solution. If the Church as founded by Christ finds its temporal manifestation in the Divine Liturgy where the bishop presides at the Eucharist with his presbyters, deacons, and people, what happens if bishops go astray? What is the response of those who witness a wholesale departure from the consensus of the faithful, the living Tradition?

First, the historical sequence of events from 1517 to 1530 makes clear that the Lutheran Reformers intended to resolve their quarrel with the already-schismatic Patriarch of the West by asking the Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation to call an ecumenical council where the bishops, priests, monastics, and laity could set forth their proposals for reform. Second, the decision of Luther and Melanchthon to send a Greek translation of the Augsburg Confession to Constantinople further signaled their awareness of the Orthodox East, the “Greeks” referred to in the Lutheran Symbolic Books. Third, the refusal of the Emperor to call such a Council, the failure of the Greek translation to reach Constantinople, and the determination of the papacy to suppress, by force if necessary, the Evangelical party in the Empire left Lutheran ecclesiological hopes in the status of an ad-hoc, emergency condition. Still, I am arguing that Lutheranism’s Eucharistic character was ambivalent from the beginning, and therefore, that discussions with the East would have proven difficult long before the abortive exchanges began between the Tübingen faculty and the Throne of the Ecumenical Patriarch in the 1570s.

At the outset, the Reformers seem to demonstrate an acute sense of the apophatic approach to their understanding of the Church. They define very quickly what the Church is not by denouncing the Donatist purists who were St. Augustine of Hippo´s cross to bear during his long episcopate in North Africa. (A.C. VIII) They confess their acceptance of Augustine´s definition of the Church in this world as a corpus permixtum. In Luther´s own musings about the paradox that the Church is at one and the same time the spotless Bride of Christ and yet made up of public and private sinners in this life, he even dares to label this the Ecclesia peccatrix—the sinner Church.

Thus it is inaccurate to accuse the Reformers of opting from the outset for an a-historical Church, an invisible one known only to God. But the ease with which they turned to the juxtaposition of “outward” signs versus “inward” grace does, I think, reflect Augustine’s own struggle with how God can make himself manifest in a world so fallen away from its original nature, in a humanity so blighted by sin and death. We can ascertain in the Lutheran Symbols’ attributes of Episcopacy and the Office of Ministry echoes of a hesitancy to identify the Church completely with the Episcopacy and Eucharist. Because of this hesitancy, even if they had won their point, gotten an Ecumenical Council, reined in the extravagant claims of the papacy, and purged the doctrine of Purgatory and the ‘treasury of merits’—the result would not have been a renewed, truly “Orthodox Catholic Church” in the West?

Under the “Office of the Ministry” (Article V) the purpose of Office in the Church is “to obtain such faith” God having provided the office and “the Gospel and the sacraments.” The ancient doctrine that God works with created, visible means in the Mysteries seems unambiguously clear. But the title of “ministry” is, in the German and the Latin originals, Vom Predigtamt (concerning the Preaching Office) and De Ministerio Ecclesiastico (Concerning the Church’s Ministry or Service) neither of which speaks to the centrality of the Mysteries per se. Some might object that the Lutherans were not breaking new ground but keeping alive an ancient tension between the “prophetic” and the “priestly” forms of God’s presence. The tensions between the sometimes all too worldly bishops of the urban churches of antiquity and the rural peasantry of the Mediterranean world (East and West) gave rise in the fifth century to conflicts between claims of authority that centered on the Office and through it, entry via Baptism, Anointing and Eucharist into the ekklesia, versus the alternative `spiritual authority` manifested by a holy elder sometimes in almost complete isolation from a sacramental life.[7] This tension has been traced back to the prophetic witness of Old Testament times and we need not delay our concerns about the Lutheran iteration by rehearsing the well-known literature that has suggested that prophetic denunciation of the priestly Temple authority and cult informs not a few of the books of Sacred Scripture the Spirit inspired the Church to affirm as canonical.[8]

Recall again that Augustine accused his Donatist opponents of error primarily on the grounds of their lack of charity—their willingness to exclude from Eucharistic communion those they deemed unworthy for lack of sufficient correlation between belief and behavior. The demand for “walking the talk” is as old as the failure of ancient Israel to remain in the covenant God made with them. But the Church long before the lamented separation of the West from Orthodox Catholic communion, had addressed the issue of those who broke communion with the bishops for perceived doctrinal errors. Although the 31st so-called “Apostolic Canon” came to be used to justify breaking of communion with bishops who not “righteous, meek, free from the love of money, lovers of truth, approved, holy . . .who are able to teach the word of piety, and rightly dividing the doctrines of the Lord,” monastic groups who invoked this canon were severely condemned in the wake of the Iconoclast controversy. Some had severed communion with Saint Methodios who had accepted the ordinations performed by iconoclast bishops.[9] By the time the so-called Photian Schism was healed in the 870s, the seventeen canons adopted by the joint East-West synod explicitly singled out presumptuous monastics for condemnation who broke communion because of their disagreement with a bishop’s lapse into error.[10]

The sixteenth century reformers probably did not know these canons, and instead appealed to Augustine’s letter to Petilian in discussing the Unity of the Church to point out that “one should not obey even regularly elected bishops if they err or if they teach or command something contrary to the divine Holy Scriptures.” (AC Article XXVIII: 28)[11] That Luther had absorbed Augustine’s insistence upon the Holy Spirit’s working in all bishops, not only that of the Bishop of Rome, and that (like the bishop of Hippo) he took seriously the upbraiding of Peter by Paul at Antioch, scholars have documented. From that reflection Luther, like his monastically inclined Episcopal forbear, insisted upon the equality of all the apostles and concluded that “neither the primacy nor the person of Peter could belong to the essence of the Church of Christ.” [12] Even so, if we agree that the Reformers faced genuine dogmatic questions, not merely ones of ecclesiastical discipline or injustices due to the personal misbehavior of a bishop or a Patriarch, we are compelled to ask: did they envision the maintenance of a Eucharistic communion as their understanding of the Church? Or, did they lapse into the default position of what they had condemned—a quasi-invisible association of minimally like-minded people bound together by a heart-felt but invisible and internal belief in divine Promise?

I have argued that not very long after the Lutheran-Orthodox exchanges began, Martin Chemnitz’s death in 1586 signaled the end of whatever initial, Eucharistic understandings of the Church Lutheranism had preserved. Chemnitz’s The Two Natures of Christ remains the best testimony to those early, initial instincts of the Lutheran reformers. Amply documented by reliance upon patristic sources, Chemnitz’s treatise emphasized the community of faith that was created precisely because of God’s assumption of humanity and his restoration of it. One cannot read Chemnitz, or Jakob Andreae or Johann Arndt without being struck by their conviction that the Eucharist was the “medicine of immortality” as the Large Catechism (V;68) affirmed and which the Catalogue of Testimonies attests by citing Canon 11 of the Third Ecumenical Council. [13]

Only six years before Chemnitz’s death, however, the publication of The Book of Concord revealed how much had changed since the presentation of the Augsburg Confession before the Imperial Diet, indeed how rapidly Luther had abandoned any hope of real continuity with the historical, lived religion of the Latin West. The initial confidence of the early Symbols about the prayers of the Theotokos, the angels, and saints for the Church on earth shifted in the Smalcald Articles of 1537 to a more hesitant “perhaps also in heaven”. The rationale is significant, for Luther asserted that the only reason people believed in the communion of the saints was out of “expectation of return”—i.e., that they were only invoked, prayed to, or honored out of the belief that these persons, especially the Virgin, more than Christ, were capable of getting needed favors or warding off dangers for the petitioner.[14]

This skeptical and truncated notion of what “the Church” encompassed can be traced to the Reformers’ fear that popular piety remained trapped in a concern to manipulate both the living and the departed. Luther had signaled his separation from Augustine on this point most vividly in the 1520s in his wholesale excision of the anaphora of the western Liturgy. Historically the oldest part of Western Catholic Orthodoxy (identified with Pope St Gregory the Great whom Luther and the Symbols cite with approval as a truly Catholic pope) the anaphora was the focus of St. Monika’s piety as she begged her son the future bishop to remember her before God in the Liturgy after her death. An intimate connection did bind Baptism for Luther and the first reformers to the need for life-long repentance, and hence Luther’s urging of auricular confession—and the “amendment of life and forsaking of sin” (AC XII:6) prior to the reception of the Lord’s Supper. Some sacramental connections that intertwined Baptism to repentance and Eucharist remained intact for Luther as they had for Augustine and the Orthodox Catholic tradition, East and West. But even before the Augsburg Confession had been presented to the Imperial Diet, the very nature of the Church, visible and invisible, gathered at the altar, had been compromised. Those who have examined carefully the intent of Luther’s teaching on the Eucharist from the early 1520s through the two catechisms and beyond have remarked that the Sacrament is mostly thought of as a “seal, sign, and testament” to strengthen faith, but that a decided uncertainty remains in his thinking about how to couple the “sign” to its effects. On the one hand, its major function is the daily strengthening of the “new man” against the relapse into the “old Adam” and the assaults of the world, the flesh, and the devil. But Luther actually places less emphasis on the actual eating and drinking than on the absolute confidence in the promise “given for you.” The key sequence is the promise, faith, received in the heart. Important though the sacrament is for Luther, he regards proper preparation as a kind of “child’s exercise” and denies any capacity or right to the Church as community to demand (for example since Lateran IV in the West) yearly auricular confession and reception of the Eucharist. Unfortunately, this rather one-sided view of the Eucharist with its remaining uncertainty about the connection between the “inner” and “outer” man had a lasting impact upon what Lutheranism became, despite other emphases in Luther’s teaching that have, from time to time, been invoked against it. [15]

Whatever the great theologians and teachers of the sixteenth century intended, historians of “lived religion” have documented that at the level of parish life and home devotion, Lutheranism shifted substantially away from a focus on the Mysteries to a study of Scripture and catechesis through a rich and vigorous tradition of hymnody.[16] A more individually-centered piety, (especially in the German Southwest where Reformed influences were stronger) left behind the deep communal rituals of medieval Catholicism’s connections of the visible and invisible worlds. Those trends accelerated sharply by the end of the sixteenth and the beginning of the seventeenth centuries, and they are reflected in manuals of piety as well as manuals of advice for pastors that are striking in their omission of any discussion about the sacramental duties of pastors.[17] Unfortunately, it was this version of Lutheranism that found its expression in the Tübingen faculty’s summary of the Lutheran faith to Constantinople, hence the historic use of the term “Luthero-Calvinistic” by somewhat confused Orthodox commentators of that time. The persistence of a genuinely Eucharistically-centered piety into the early eighteenth century in places like Leipzig (and in Saxony in general) cannot be cited as characteristic of Lutheran ecclesiology and liturgical praxis.[18] Long before the rise of Pietism with its insistence upon the primacy of the interior transformation of the heart, and its disregard for the centrality of sacramental devotion, the ambiguities of Lutheran ecclesiology had already manifested themselves.

I am not arguing here that perpetual forbearance or patience with a genuinely erring Patriarch should have been the option seized by the Lutheran reformers. I am arguing however, that at base, their vision of the Church was defective even before formal separation occurred. It was not just the meddlesome, but bishops and priests per se, that at least some in the Lutheran camp were determined to be rid of. The ease with which sixteenth-century adherents believed the Lutheran Church to mean the association that privileged private judgment in a Church whose heart is known only to God and not centered on the Eucharist but on a preached and sung Word—the “essential” Church toward which all material forms only “point”—is telling. Such a notion of the Church provides the ultimate escape clause useful for hunkering down and ignoring more difficult questions of genuine communion across time, and death. We are compelled to ask then, whether, in severing communion with Rome, the Lutheran reformers may not have set in motion for themselves and their posterity the terrible possibility T.S. Eliot’s famous play refers to: “The last temptation is the greatest treason:To do the right deed for the wrong reason.”



For ease of reference, I have used the paginations in Theodore G. Tappert, ed. and transl., The Book of Concord: The Confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church (Philadelphia, 1959), but my primary reference is Hans Lietzmann, et al., eds., Die Bekenntnisschriften der evangelisch-lutherischen Kirche (Göttingen, 1952); I do not find English translations or clarifications that substantially modify my judgments made here in Charles P. Arand, Timothy J. Wengert, and Robert Kolb, The Book of Concord: The Confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church (Minneapolis, MN, 2000); the title of my paper refers to a quotation that is attributed in various forms to Henry II of England; the final quotation is from T.S. Eliot’s Murder in the Cathedral (New York, 1935; and The Film of Murder in the Cathedral (London, 1952), 77.

[1] “Christian Unity As Viewed by the Orthodox Church: Statement of the Representatives of the Orthodox Church at the North American Faith and Order Study Conference, Oberlin, Ohio, September 3-10, 1957; ”The text of Dominus Jesus is available at http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc20000806_dominus-jesus_en.htn; for Pope Benedict’s recent reaffirmation, see the same site up to _doc20070629_responsa-quaest; for the Orthodox statement, see http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/ecumenism/oberlin.aspx. 

[2] George Wolfgang Forell, “The Formula of Concord and the Teaching Ministry,” Sixteenth Century Journal VIII, 4 (1977), 39-47 at 47 commenting on Luther’s sermon and Article IX of the Formula of Concord

[3] J.N.D.Kelly, Early Christian Doctrines (San Francisco, 1978), 412-17, citations at 415, 416-17

[4] I have surveyed some of the most recent revisions on Augustine in Roeber, “Western, Eastern, or Global Orthodoxy? Reflections on St. Augustine of Hippo in Recent Literature,” Pro Ecclesia: A Journal of Evangelical and Catholic Theology (forthcoming, 2008). On Augustine’s Eucharistic language, see Jaroslav Pelikan, The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine Vol I: The Emergence of the Catholic Tradition (100-600)(Chicago, 1971), 304,ff; on the centrality of the mysteries and Christ as Physician in Augustine’s thought, see Carol Harrison, Rethinking Augustine’s Early Theology: An Argument for Continuity (New York, 2006), 250-265. Augustine’s invocation of the Catholic faith is in Contra Epistulam quam vocant fundamenti (ca. 396) v.6; his recollection of his mother’s plea is in the Confessions Book 9 Ch.13: 36 and 37. On the issue of theophanies, see Rowan A. Greer, The Fear of Freedom: A Study of Miracles in the Roman Imperial Church (University Park, PA, 1989);  

[5] Warren Quanbeck, “The Formula of Concord and Authority in the Church,” Sixteenth Century Journal VIII, 4 (1977), 49-60 citation at 56

[6] For a Lutheran commentary on this critical passage (To the Ephesians 20:2) see William R. Schoedel, Ignatius of Antioch: A Commentary on the Letters of Ignatius of Antioch (Philadelphia, 1985), 95-98; see also Thomas Lechner, Ignatius adversus Valentinianos? Chronologische und theologiegeschichtliche Studien zu den Briefen des Ignatius von Antiochien (London, Boston, Cologne, 1999), 301-305. 

[7] On this tension between episcopal and “spiritual” authority, see Claudia Rapp, Holy Bishops in Late Antiquity: The Nature of Christian Leadership in an Age of Transition (Berkeley, Los Angeles, London, 2005). 

[8] On some of these tensions, see Margaret Barker, The Great High Priest: The Temple Roots of Christian Liturgy (London, New York, 2003). 

[9] On the history of the “Apostolic Constitutions,” see Phillip Schaff, The Oldest Church Manual called the Teaching of the Twelve Apostles (Edinburgh, 1885; reissued London, 2001), 259-287, citation at 284-85

[10] For details, see J.M. Hussey, The Orthodox Church in the Byzantine Empire (Oxford, UK, 1986), 69-101. 

[11] Wensel Lohff, “Legitimate Limits of Doctrinal Pluralism according to the Formula of Concord,” The Sixteenth Century Journal VIII :4 (1977), 39-48

[12] See on Augustine and Rome, J.E. Merdinger, Rome and the African Church in the Time of Augustine (New Haven and London, 1997), 190-99; on Luther and his view of the tension between the two apostles, Karl Holl, ,,Der Streit zwischen Petrus und Paulus zu Antiochien in seiner Bedeutung für Luthers Entwicklung,” in Holl, Gesammelte Aufsätze zur Kirchengeschichte III Der Westen (Tübingen, 1928), 134-146, citation at 143 (my translation). 

[13] Roeber, “Priesthoods and Pieties: Orthodoxy and the Role of the Post-Reformation Laos,” in Anton C. Vrame, ed., One Calling in Christ: The Laity in the Orthodox Church (Berkeley, CA, 2005), 39-52. 

[14] Roeber, “An Orthodox Response to “Offered and Received”:The Orthodox Future of Lutheranism” Lutheran Forum 37:2 (Spring, 2003), 45-48; see further Bjarne Wollan Teigen, The Lord’s Supper in the Theology of Martin Chemnitz (Brewster, MA, 1986), 141-61 at 157. 

[15] On this point, see David P. Scaer, Baptism; Vol 11 in John Stephenson, ed., Confessional Lutheran Dogmatics (St. Louis, MO, 1999), 29; for Luther’s attacks on the anaphora and the unresolved tensions in his catechetical approach to the Eucharist, see “The Abomination of the Secret Mass,” (1525) trans Abdel Ross Wentz, in Luther’s Works Word and Sacrament II Abdel Ross Wentz, ed., vol. 36 (Philadelphia, 1959), 309-328; for early Lutheran liturgical reforms, Liturgy and Hymns, Ulrich S. Leupold, ed., Vol. 53 Luther’s Works; my comments on Luther’s uncertainty on the connections between the “inner” and “outer” dimensions of the Sacrament summarize Albrecht Peters, Kommentar zu Luthers Katechismen Band 4: Die Taufe. Das Abendmahl, Gottfried Seebaß, ed., (Göttingen, 1993), 129-189, at 131, 160, 163-64, 176. 

[16] See for example, Susan Karant-Nunn, Reformation of Ritual: An Interpretation of Early Modern Germany (London and New York, 1997). 91-137; Christopher Boyd Brown, Singing the Gospel: Lutheran Hymns and the Success of the Reformation (Cambridge, MA and London, 2005), 127-29; 171-2

[17] See Roeber, “Official and Nonofficial Piety and Ritual in Early Lutheranism,” Concordia Theological Quarterly 63:2 (April, 1999), 119-143; Amy Nelson Burnett, “The Evolution of the Lutheran Pastors’ Manual in the Sixteenth Century,” Church History 73:3 (September, 2004), 536-565. 

[18] See Günter Stiller, Johann Sebastian Bach and Liturgical Life in Leipzig (St. Louis, MO, 1984), 142-167.


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