Saturday, October 31, 2009

Diet of Worms: not just another weight loss plan

It's Hallowe'en.

Tonight, American children will dress up as princesses and pirates and knock on neighbors' doors for candy.

It's also Reformation Day.

On Oct. 31, 1517, Martin Luther dressed as a monk (although he wasn't technically dressing up, since he was, in fact, a monk) and knocked on the door of Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany. Using a hammer and a nail.

Luther wasn't asking for sweets, but for reform. He was calling the Pope out. He had seen too much corruption in the church of his day, so he posted a list of 95 statements of contention on the door. Those statements came to be known as The 95 Theses,* and they caused quite a stir.

(That may be the biggest understatement I've ever made.)

Ever since I learned about the Hallowe'en/Reformation Day connection several years ago, I've wanted to dress up as Martin Luther and go trick-or-treating through the neighborhood.

It'd be a simple costume: brown robe, sandals, rope belt... hammer, nail, parchment...

But I realize it would be one of those jokes that's only funny to me.

Plus, it would take years to grow my hair out.


If you haven't seen the movie Luther, I'd highly recommend it. Here's a short clip to whet your appetite:

*The 95 Theses Rap gives a more contemporary (though probably less accurate) look at the Reformation.


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