Trick or treat? Happy Reformation Day!

Martin LutherWhen all those little Luthers, Calvins, Zwinglis, Bullingers and Methanthons — Knoxes? Perhaps. but not Cramners — come to your doors tonight, you might give them a tract with the caramel cod. Or perhaps a copy of the Ninety-five Theses.

Reformation Day is a toughy for ecumenically minded Protestants: honor the heritage or downplay the split? With All Saints and All Souls following, it is tempting to give the broader observances airtime on the nearest Sunday. Perhaps “Reform” the Sunday before and “All” the Sunday after? I’ll leave that to you.

A parting thought from Reformed Catholicism, a quotation from “Mercersburg theologian” Philip Schaff, who could see both sides of things:

The Reformation is the legitimate offspring, the greatest act of the Catholic Church.

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