Pope Francis refers to Martin Luther to spread important message for the Church

Speaking to a delegation of pilgrims led by Lutheran Archbishop Kari Makinen of Turku, Pope Francis shared a special message, in which he quoted Martin Luther.

According to the Catholic Herald, Pope Francis spoke of the his October visit to Sweden last year, which marked 5 centuries since the start of the Reformation.

He said it was a “significant step” that “gave us courage” for the ecumenical journey that continues to this day.

“This joint commemoration of the Reformation was important on both the human and theological-spiritual levels,” His Holiness stated.

“After 50 years of official ecumenical dialogue between Catholics and Lutherans, we have succeeded in clearly articulating points of view which today we agree on. For this we are grateful.

“At the same time we keep alive in our hearts sincere contrition for our fathers. In this spirit, we recalled in Lund that the intention of Martin Luther 500 years ago was to renew the Church, not divide Her.

“The gathering there gave us the courage and strength, in our Lord Jesus Christ, to look ahead to the ecumenical journey that we are called to walk together.”

The pontiff thanked Archbishop Makinen for bringing his grandchildren to the audience and said: “We need the simplicity of children: they will show us the path that leads to Jesus Christ.”

By Kenya Sinclair



  1. Peter Spasic Reply

    The Pope stated that “the intention of Martin Luther 500 years ago was to renew the Church, not divide Her.”
    Does that mean the Pope agrees it needed renewing (whatever that means)? And if so, has it been renewed

  2. donderkis Reply

    Martin Luther was actually a Catholic Reformer before he became a Protestant Reformer. The Catholic Church was in the midst of a reformation before the “reformers” pushed it along faster.
    The Council of Tent was a “Reformation” council as can be seen in the first session.

    “Doth it please you,–unto the praise and glory of the holy and undivided Trinity, Father, and Son, and Holy Ghost ; for the increase and exaltation of the Christian faith and religion; for the extirpation of heresies; for the peace and union of the Church; for the REFORMATION of the Clergy and Christian people; for the depression and extinction of the enemies of the Christian name,–to decree and declare that the sacred and general council of Trent do begin, and hath begun?
    They answered: It pleaseth us.”
    (Capitals mine)

  3. George Kuforiji Reply

    So were the intentions of all other heretics that came before him

  4. Patrick Gannon Reply

    That’s not the way I read it:
    “Martin Luther; 10 November 1483 – 18 February 1546) was a German professor of theology, composer, priest, monk[2] and a seminal figure in the Protestant Reformation.
    Luther came to reject several teachings and practices of the Roman Catholic Church. He strongly disputed the claim that freedom from God’s punishment for sin could be purchased with money, proposing an academic discussion of the practice and efficacy of indulgences in his Ninety-five Theses of 1517. His refusal to renounce all of his writings at the demand of Pope Leo X in 1520 and the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V at the Diet of Worms in 1521 resulted in his excommunication by the Pope and condemnation as an outlaw by the Emperor.
    Luther taught that salvation and, subsequently, eternal life are not earned by good deeds but are received only as the free gift of God’s grace through the believer’s faith in Jesus Christ as redeemer from sin. His theology challenged the authority and office of the Pope by teaching that the Bible is the only source of divinely revealed knowledge from God[3] and opposed sacerdotalism by considering all baptized Christians to be a holy priesthood.[4] Those who identify with these, and all of Luther’s wider teachings, are called Lutherans, though Luther insisted on Christian or Evangelical as the only acceptable names for individuals who professed Christ.” Wikipedia
    That doesn’t sound like renewal. That sounds like rejection. Let’s face it, Christianity is the most divisive and separate religion in history. No other religion has broken up into so many sects and denominations. It’s a religion of separation and division, and I don’t think there is much chance of putting Humpty Dumpty back together again.

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