The Union of Martin and Katie

Image result for martin and katherine luther

You may have noticed from the quotes I’ve posted that Martin Luther had quite a bit to say about marriage.  Of course, as a monk, he would not have expected to marry, and even after breaking with the Catholic church, he didn’t imagine becoming a husband for one simple reason –he thought he would probably be killed at some point for his faith and his beliefs and therefore wasn’t good husband material!

Enter Katherine Von Bora.  After the death of her mother when she was five, Katherine was sent off to a convent to be educated and to become a nun.  In her 20’s she was convicted by Luther’s teaching that it was wrong for young women to be pressured to take a vow of celibacy not based on personal conviction.  She and some other nuns escaped with Luther’s help and were married or returned to their families.  Katherine’s family did not want her back and so she lived with some friends of Luther and she and Martin became friends.  He tried to arrange a marriage for her with one of his colleagues, but she wasn’t interested.

When Luther did begin to consider marriage,  and proposed to Katherine, he said his motives were to please his father, spite the devil and cross the Pope.  Not very romantic!  However, the Luthers came to love one another deeply;  Martin cherished Kathrine who he called, “Katie, my rib.”  She ran the household well (something Martin had little interest in) and they were known for their hospitality toward family, friends and students.  They were married for over twenty years and parents of six children.

The success of their union sprang from faithfulness to God.  They regarded marriage as a school for sanctification, and were not adverse to correcting one another.  There is every indication that they enjoyed marriage as God’s gift and lived it to His glory.  Here’s how one Luther scholar put it:

“Luther’s faith was simple enough to trust that after a conscientious day’s labor, a Christian father could come home and eat his sausage, drink his beer, play his flute, sing with his children, and make love to his wife —all to the glory of God.!”

Dear readers, tell us about other godly marriage that have been an example to you.

Reformation Women

The information in this post came from an article in The Lutheran Witness entitled “Faithful Women of the Reformation.”

Katie Luther–Martin Luther’s wife.  Luther called Katie, “my rib” and depended upon her good sense and management skills to run the household that became famous for Luther’s table talks and hospitality to students and many other. Katie was a former nun  You’ve probably heard of her, but what about these other reformation women?

  1. Elizabeth Cruciger who like Katie was a nun who converted to Lutheranism after reading the writings of Dr. Luther.  She has the privilege of being known as the first female Lutheran hymn writer and poet.  After sitting at the feet of the Reformation’s foremost theologians, she was inspired to write the text to the hymn, “The Only Son From Heaven.”
  2. Elizabeth of Brunswick, daughter of German nobility, married Eric I, Duke of Brunswick-Luneberg.  She converted to the Lutheran faith after being introduced to his teachings by her mother and corresponding with Luther himself.  After her husband’s death, Elizabeth ruled as regent for her young son and her influence was instrumental in the establishment of the Lutheran Church in lower Saxony.
  3. Ursula Von Munsterberg was the granddaughter of the king of Bohemia.  She was sent to a convent when very young and was instrumental in having Luther’s writings smuggled in for the nuns to read.  This lead many of them to leave the convent and monastic life.  Ursula took refuge in Luther’s home and wrote a defense(which was published)to the accusation that she was encouraging others to godless living.

How can we do our part to be “Reformation Women” today?  Send us your thoughts.

 

 

Same or Different?

This post was written by Lynn Wellumsom, our national WMF(Women’s Missionary Federation) president and published in the Fall edition of the Helping Hand Newsletter.  I thought it spoke to our monthly theme of Reformation, and received her permission to share it on the Lutheran Ladies Connection blog.  For more information on the Women’s Missionary Federation, click on WMF on our header.

Katie Von Bora Luther entered a convent around the age of five.  She used a slate and chalk, my darling six-year old Naomi entered Riverside Christian School with an ipad.  Virtually the same size.  Same or different?

Katie met, got acquainted and married Martin Luther through difficult and dangerous circumstances.  Today people go to On-Line dating services and search for a perfect mate.  Same or different?

Katie and Luther, as married adults, lived in tumultuous times.  Today our nation is going through cataclysmic changes.  Same or different?

Martin Luther nailed the 95 thesis to the church door, the bulletin board of its day.  Anyone can post on Facebook today.  Same or different?

Martin translated the Bible from original languages.  Wycliffe Bible translators, in some cases, can speak a language into a computer that translates into another language.  Same or different?

The biblical theology Luther discovered was quickly disseminated through pamphlets and books using Guttenberg’s new invention, the printing press.  Kindle makes it possible to access millions of books in electronic form almost instantly, less trees die.  Same or different?

Times and methods may change but the message remains:  Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.