The reforms before the Reformation

The Romanian cultural magazine Dilema Veche (‘The Old Dilemma’) published this week my essay on the various reform movements punctuating the medieval period and which Martin Luther inherited when he sparked the controversy which led to what we now call the Reformation. As the Western world commemorates 500 years since the publication of Luther’s famous Theses, I look at how ideas of change, church reform, spiritual renewal, personal responsibility and Christianity’s centuries-long self-challenging created the framework that made Luther the effulgent comet-head of a movement that would literally change the world. I argue that Luther’s radical critique (of the Church, textual and human authority, convention, practice, etc) did not arise ex nihilo, but was as much a product as a reaction of what may be called the spirit of the Middle Ages.

The essay, in Romanian, was also published online here.

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