22 November, 2009

How you say 'dat?

Renascentes Musae (reh-nah-SKEN-tays MOO-sigh).

That's right. Reh-nah-SKEN-tays MOO-sigh. We use phrases like ad fontes!--back to the sources--but to the Wittenberg Reformers, the analogue to the Reformation of the church was the REBIRTH of the Muses, literally, "the Muses in the process of being re-born, or renascentes Musae." In Wittenberg, the Renaissance was concomitant and not parallel to, but inextricably bound up with, the Reformation of the Church. The religious Reformation, that is, the call to repentance and faith in the One Lord, Jesus Christ, the Redeemer from sin, death, and the devil, was, from beginning to end, a university movement. It began in the lecture halls (or the Schlo├čkirche door) of Wittenberg; and it came to its consummation there, more or less, at Bergen Abbey. Called Kloster Berge in German, in the 1570s it was an institution dedicated to learning; and it was here that the formulators of the Formula of Concord hammered out their great, learned consensus that this is what Scripture teaches and what we must believe and confess. The intellectual toolbox of the consensus at Kloster Berge was an intense reckoning with the Western theological tradition, a keen use of the tools of dialectic, and a deep, intense knowledge of the languages of Scripture and the West.

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