An interesting but all too short interview with a Catholic Luther scholar

HT to Pastor Fraser Pearce for the link to this interview with Fr Jared Wicks. As I say in the title, it is interesting, but I want to know more. I should follow up on Wick’s writing on Luther to see what he has to say.

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3 responses to “An interesting but all too short interview with a Catholic Luther scholar

  1. Christine

    Oh my, John Carroll University (with its beautiful campus!) of all places, right on my home turf.

    What a fascinating piece, especially this:

    That is, I am con­vinced that we, espe­cially Catholics, need to bring out just what the sacra­ment memo­ri­al­izes, namely, the Lord’s giv­ing of him­self in death, with his body bro­ken and his blood shed “for you”—pro vobis, fuer euch!

    Indeed!

    From my his­tor­i­cal knowl­edge of the Ref­or­ma­tion, I think that the state-based con­sti­tu­tions of the first Lutheran ter­ri­to­r­ial churches left Luther­ans with an endemic weak­ness that has not been over­come. Lutheran bish­ops are far from being fig­ures of mag­is­te­r­ial impact and author­ity; they could never assem­ble as a body able to pro­duce what came of the great coun­cils. I recall how Melanchthon fore­saw this result at Augs­burg in 1530 when the pow­er­ful rep­re­sen­ta­tives of Nurem­burg began exer­cis­ing con­trol over the issues of doc­tri­nal dia­logue with the Catholic side.

    Yes, that rings true and was one of the reasons for my pull towards Catholicism. Especially in liberal Lutheran bodies like the ELCA the office of bishop has been reconfigured along the lines of the corporate model.

  2. William Tighe

    “Yes, that rings true and was one of the reasons for my pull towards Catholicism. Especially in liberal Lutheran bodies like the ELCA the office of bishop has been reconfigured along the lines of the corporate model.”

    And even in the Church of Sweden, the one Lutheran body that claimed to preserve the “apostolic succession” of its bishops at the Reformation (but, as one Swedish bishop wrote a century ago “as though we had it not”) its corporate episcopate has never had any authority per se, and now, in its disestablished framework, the bishops per se have only the standing of “consultors” to the elected Church Assembly, and not even a vote in it (unless individual bishops are elected to it on the same basis as any other delegates).

    Some Lutheran churches stemming from the Swedish have lately been striving for a more “magisterial” model of episcopacy (one thinks of Archbishop Janis Vanags of Latvia, for instance, and of the division of the Latvian Lutheran Church in to three dioceses in 2003, or of the heroic Walter Obare Omwaza of Tanzania), but this does not seem to have gained much general traction in “World Lutheranism,” whether “liberal” or “confessional.” And how can it, really, when Luther himself based his quasi-magisterial authority on his being a “Professor of Holy Scripture,” an academically-qualified theologian and exegete; and what prevents others from claiming an analogous authority on the same basis?

  3. Alfredo Watkins

    Thanks for posting this. As you say, it definitely leaves you hanging however.