Tuesday, October 04, 2016 - Francis of Assisi, renewer of the church, died 1226 - Born into the family of a wealthy merchant, Francis gave up his inheritance to serve poor people. He formed the Order of Friars Minor (called Franciscans), who took on poverty and the task of preaching "using words if necessary." Francis had a spirit of gratitude for all of God's creation.
Tuesday, October 04, 2016 - Theodor Fliedner, renewer of society, died 1864 - Fliedner helped to bring about a revival of the ministry of deaconesses among Lutherans. He was influenced in this by Moravian deaconesses he had met. The motherhouse he founded in Kaiserswerth, Germany, inspired many around the world to take up this ministry.
Thursday, October 06, 2016 - William Tyndale, translator, martyr, died 1536 - Tyndale was ordained a priest in England, and wished to translate the Bible into English. He was opposed in this by King Henry VIII, causing him to flee to Germany. He completed the New Testament in 1525, but before he could finish the Old Testament, he was tried for heresy and burned at the stake.
Friday, October 07, 2016 - Henry Melchior Muhlenberg, pastor in North America, died 1787 - Divided Lutherans in America asked leaders in Europe to send someone who could take charge and unite their work. Muhlenberg was sent, and was effective in organizing the American Lutherans. Among other accomplishments, his liturgical principles became the basis for the Common Service of 1888.
Monday, October 10, 2016 - Massie L. Kennard, renewer of the church, died 1996 (TFF) - A native of Chicago, Kennard was a major figure in supporting and working toward ethnic and racial inclusiveness in the former Lutheran Church in America. Ordained in 1958, he served in positions including Director for Minority Concerns of the Division for Mission in North America.
Saturday, October 15, 2016 - Teresa of Avila (Teresa de Jesus), teacher, renewer of the church, died 1582 - A mystical writer and reformer of the monastic order (Carmelites) to which she belonged, Teresa may also be commemorated with John of the Cross on December 14. Latino Christians traditionally remember her on this date.
Monday, October 17, 2016 - Ignatius, Bishop of Antioch, martyr, died around 115 - Ignatius was the second bishop of Antioch in Syria, the city where the name "Christians" originated. Ignatius is known to us from his letters, which encouraged Christians to live in love, yet stand firm in true doctrine.
Tuesday, October 18, 2016 - Luke, Evangelist - Identified as the author of both Luke and Acts, Luke was careful to place the events of Jesus' life in their social and religious contexts. His gospel gives us some of the most beloved parables, as well as the songs of Zechariah, Mary, the angels, and Simeon.
Sunday, October 23, 2016 - James of Jerusalem, martyr, died around 62 - One of three early-church leaders named James, this man is identified in the New Testament and by a historian of the time as a brother of Jesus. Scholars are uncertain whether this means a blood brother. He was a leader of the church in Jerusalem.
Wednesday, October 26, 2016 - Philipp Nicolai, died 1608; Johann Heermann, died 1647; Paul Gerhardt, died 1676; hymn writers - These great hymnwriters all worked in seventeenth-century Germany in times of war and plague. Nicolai, a pastor, lost 1,300 parishioners to plague, 170 in one week. He wrote "O Morning Star, how fair and bright" and "Wake, awake, for night is flying." Heermann's hymns, including "Ah, holy Jesus," often express the emotions of faith. Gerhardt, perhaps the greatest Lutheran hymnwriter, was a pastor in Berlin.
Friday, October 28, 2016 - Simon and Jude, Apostles - We know little about these apostles. Simon is listed as "the zealot" or Cananean in New Testament lists. Jude, also called Thaddeus, asked Jesus at the last supper why he had revealed himself to the disciples but not to the world.
Monday, October 31, 2016 - Reformation Day - By the end of the seventeenth century, many Lutheran churches celebrated a festival commemorating Martin Luther's posting of the Ninety-five Theses, a summary of abuses in the church of his time. At the heart of the reform movement was the gospel, the good news that it is by grace through faith that we are justified and set free.
3 - Jim M
3 - Jim M
7 - Greg H
7 - Kristin O
16 - Diana C
23 - Jovanna G
29 - James G