ALPB Forum Online

ALPB => Your Turn => Topic started by: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on July 09, 2021, 08:23:00 AM

Title: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on July 09, 2021, 08:23:00 AM
Quote
The church was destroyed during the Protestant Reformation that swept through Europe in the 16th century and led to the creation of new branches of Christianity, the archaeologists said in the statement.

https://www.livescience.com/otto-the-great-church-discovered.html (https://www.livescience.com/otto-the-great-church-discovered.html)

Any clues as to this history? Typically, churches were repurposed rather than destroyed. What happened here? The article does not explain.
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Steven W Bohler on July 09, 2021, 09:22:19 AM
Quote
The church was destroyed during the Protestant Reformation that swept through Europe in the 16th century and led to the creation of new branches of Christianity, the archaeologists said in the statement.

https://www.livescience.com/otto-the-great-church-discovered.html (https://www.livescience.com/otto-the-great-church-discovered.html)

Any clues as to this history? Typically, churches were repurposed rather than destroyed. What happened here? The article does not explain.

It might be a good question to ask the article's author.  I wonder if it was really a church, or whether it was more of a royal chapel (considering its connection with a palace, as mentioned in the article, as well as the relative lack of religious items and burials found there).
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Michael Slusser on July 09, 2021, 11:25:36 AM
Quote
The church was destroyed during the Protestant Reformation that swept through Europe in the 16th century and led to the creation of new branches of Christianity, the archaeologists said in the statement.

https://www.livescience.com/otto-the-great-church-discovered.html (https://www.livescience.com/otto-the-great-church-discovered.html)

Any clues as to this history? Typically, churches were repurposed rather than destroyed. What happened here? The article does not explain.
The German to which the article links says only "Die Mauern wurden nach der Reformation komplett abgetragen, " i.e. "The walls were completely pulled down after the Reformation . . . "

Peace,
Michael
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Dave Benke on July 09, 2021, 11:28:57 AM
Even though Wikipedia is an uneven source of knowledge, this link has a nice list of all the destruction going on in the wake of the Reformation:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_wars_of_religion

Saxony, of course, became a Protestant stronghold, so it might be assumed that the church referenced was one of the casualties.  It's listed as a 16th century destruction.

From my family heritage, there's never anything wrong with calling someone Otto and Great at the same time.  Lots of Ottos in any Teutonic family tree.

Dave Benke
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Dan Fienen on July 09, 2021, 11:32:25 AM
Let's not forget that Luther had issues with some of the iconoclasts who numbered themselves among his followers, sometimes claiming to complete what Luther had only begun.
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: John_Hannah on July 09, 2021, 12:18:57 PM
Looks like a "Castle" church, probably not used by any parishioners.

Peace, JOHN
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Randy Bosch on July 09, 2021, 01:41:03 PM
"Castle" churches were very common adjuncts to royal quarters, and often re-purposed over the years.
A famous example:  The Basilica d'San Marco (St. Mark's Cathedral) in Venice, adjacent to the Doges Palace, was for many centuries the Chapel of the Palace (rather more ornate than many...).  The Chapel became the Basilica, or cathedral, of the Archdiocese  at the command of Napoleon Empire overlords in 1807, placing the function there to be in the center of and under the thumb of government in the former Republic.  Why?  Check out Napoleon's history of "revisions" to the church and placing of its authority under his crown (self-coronated fellow).  The church of San Pietro d'Castello on the east-side island of Olivolo (now Isola San Pietro) had been the seat of the Archdiocese and then the Basilica of the Patriarch of Venice - as far from the seat of secular power as could be in the island city.
All still standing, after numerous remodels/restorations.

By the way, the Doge was elected, not royalty, but "palace" sounds important.
 
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: John_Hannah on July 09, 2021, 02:36:26 PM
The Castle church in Torgau was designed by Luther himself; it is the only example of Luther's "architecture." It's interesting because of its simplicity, for example with a free standing altar. It is too small to be useful for the community. The Castle church in Wttenberg is large but used, I believe, only by tourists, mostly Armericans.

Perhaps "Otto's chapel" became structurally unsound; think Surfside, FL.

Peace, JOHN
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Randy Bosch on July 09, 2021, 02:58:15 PM
The Castle church in Torgau was designed by Luther himself; it is the only example of Luther's "architecture." It's interesting because of its simplicity, for example with a free standing altar. It is too small to be useful for the community. The Castle church in Wttenberg is large but used, I believe, only by tourists, mostly Armericans.

Perhaps "Otto's chapel" became structurally unsound; think Surfside, FL.

Peace, JOHN

Our then-church choir sang in the Castle Church the day East Germany ceased to exist.  No organized singing was allowed, but the choir broke into an impromptu rendition of A Mighty Fortress in German.  The almost-out-of-work armed guards were not impressed, but ... hey.
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Michael Slusser on July 09, 2021, 03:21:26 PM
The Castle church in Torgau was designed by Luther himself; it is the only example of Luther's "architecture." It's interesting because of its simplicity, for example with a free standing altar. It is too small to be useful for the community. The Castle church in Wttenberg is large but used, I believe, only by tourists, mostly Armericans.

Perhaps "Otto's chapel" became structurally unsound; think Surfside, FL.

Peace, JOHN

Our then-church choir sang in the Castle Church the day East Germany ceased to exist.  No organized singing was allowed, but the choir broke into an impromptu rendition of A Mighty Fortress in German.  The almost-out-of-work armed guards were not impressed, but ... hey.
THAT is an amazing memory!

Peace,
Michael
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on July 10, 2021, 06:51:26 AM
Thanks, folks, for your insights. The sentence in the article leaves matters open for a full range of possibilities. I suppose we'll have to wait for a fuller report from the archaeologists as to whether the church was intentionally destroyed, mistakenly destroyed, or neglectfully destroyed.
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on July 12, 2021, 06:59:38 AM
Found this in news feed this morning:

Quote
Because Otto the Great was associated with what is now known as Catholicism, the church was torn down during the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century. Though other Christian structures from the period survived, itís possible that the church was dealt with more severely, since Martin Luther, the founder of Protestantism, was born in nearby town of Eisleben.

https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/church-discovered-helfta-germany-1234598283/ (https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/church-discovered-helfta-germany-1234598283/)

Not sure this makes sense. Did Luther rant against Otto? I don't recall that.
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Dan Fienen on July 12, 2021, 09:15:20 AM
Haven't seen any article that does more than suggest that the church was destroyed during the time of the Reformation and the Reformation was associated with Luther. No details as to exactly who destroyed it or their reasoning. The nearness to Eisleben to associate the destruction with Luther seem pure speculation. Some who associated themselves with Luther were into iconoclasm, but I don't recall Luther himself preaching iconoclasm.
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Dave Benke on July 13, 2021, 08:25:06 AM
Haven't seen any article that does more than suggest that the church was destroyed during the time of the Reformation and the Reformation was associated with Luther. No details as to exactly who destroyed it or their reasoning. The nearness to Eisleben to associate the destruction with Luther seem pure speculation. Some who associated themselves with Luther were into iconoclasm, but I don't recall Luther himself preaching iconoclasm.

Against the Jews, their lies and the burning of their synagogues is at the very least iconoclastic.

Dave Benke
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Michael Slusser on July 13, 2021, 09:36:02 AM
Haven't seen any article that does more than suggest that the church was destroyed during the time of the Reformation and the Reformation was associated with Luther. No details as to exactly who destroyed it or their reasoning. The nearness to Eisleben to associate the destruction with Luther seem pure speculation. Some who associated themselves with Luther were into iconoclasm, but I don't recall Luther himself preaching iconoclasm.

Against the Jews, their lies and the burning of their synagogues is at the very least iconoclastic.

Dave Benke
Iconoclasm destroyed images, especially sacred images, and left the churches standing, though bare. (Think Hagia Sophia in Istanbul.)

Destroying sacred buildings themselves is not iconoclastic. It may be barbarian, tyrannical, brutal, and so forth.

Peace,
Michael

Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Dave Benke on July 13, 2021, 09:50:11 AM
Haven't seen any article that does more than suggest that the church was destroyed during the time of the Reformation and the Reformation was associated with Luther. No details as to exactly who destroyed it or their reasoning. The nearness to Eisleben to associate the destruction with Luther seem pure speculation. Some who associated themselves with Luther were into iconoclasm, but I don't recall Luther himself preaching iconoclasm.

Against the Jews, their lies and the burning of their synagogues is at the very least iconoclastic.

Dave Benke
Iconoclasm destroyed images, especially sacred images, and left the churches standing, though bare. (Think Hagia Sophia in Istanbul.)

Destroying sacred buildings themselves is not iconoclastic. It may be barbarian, tyrannical, brutal, and so forth.

Peace,
Michael

Yes; additionally, Judaism is aniconic.  My bad.

Dave Benke
Title: Re: Protestants Destroy Church?
Post by: Rev. Edward Engelbrecht on July 13, 2021, 01:43:36 PM
Some years ago I published an article on Lutheran views of art as displayed in sanctuaries. My research confirmed the conservative trend in 16th century Lutheranism to retain existing art from the medieval churches where they worshiped. What they tended to remove was side altars to focus the congregation on the main altar. Art that could be interpreted in keeping with the Reformation confession was retained rather than removed or destroyed.

If Otto's chapel was destroyed, I find myself wondering whether it may have taken place under the leadership of Karlstadt, or someone like him, while Luther was away at the Wartburg. Karlstadt was an iconoclast whereas Luther clearly was not and condemned Karlstadt's extremism. As I recall when Luther returned from the Wartburg to discover what Karlstadt had done, Luther reverted to Latin for the mass, communion in one kind, and had his hair freshly tonsured to reinforce the continuity between the Reformation and the medieval Church. Over time he taught the people and then made changes but never became an iconoclast.