Reformation 500 updates

Success of A Return to Grace

Hundreds of WELS congregations and groups have already hosted screenings of the Martin Luther film A Return to Grace: Luther’s Life and Legacy in their local communities, and hundreds more are planning showings in the upcoming months leading up to the 500th anniversary of the Reformation this October.

Lee Hitter, director of WELS Communications, says he is thrilled to see WELS congregations take advantage of this opportunity to highlight God’s grace and the anniversary of the Reformation in their communities. “The reaction from our members that have seen the film is tremendous,” he says. “Every Lutheran should make it a priority to see it on the big screen. Celebrating the 500th anniversary of Reformation is one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences.”

Congregations can still host local screenings of the film. Find out how at wels.net/reformation500.


Movie and resources available for preorder

DVDs of A Return to Grace are available for preorder through Northwestern Publishing House. They will be available in November.

Other resources based on the movie are also available for preorder, including:

A Return to Grace four-week Bible study. This resource will use film segments to help viewers explore the life, times, and importance of Martin Luther. Available early summer.

● “Reformation: Grace, Faith, Scripture” film vignettes and Bible study resources. These 12 three- to four-minute vignettes will highlight the important truths of the Reformation. Both a five-minute and a full-length Bible study will be available to use with these vignettes. Available early summer.

God’s Plan for Luther and Me, a children’s film to help children explore what it means to be a Lutheran Christian today as well as a curriculum of classroom activities to go with the film. Available in fall.

Learn more at nph.net/returntograce.


Outreach resources available

The Commission on Evangelism, Board for Home Missions, and Northwestern Publishing House have prepared materials for congregations to host four different outreach Sundays in late 2017 and early 2018. These worship resources will focus on the four solas, the “alones” of the Reformation.

Nov. 5—Reformation and a focus on Scripture alone

Nov. 26—Christ the King Sunday and a focus on Christ alone

Dec. 17—Third Sunday in Advent and a focus on grace alone

Jan. 7, 2018—Epiphany and a focus on faith alone

Michael Hintz, director of the Commission on Evangelism, says these services are wonderful ways to review the history of the Reformation but also a great opportunity to share its message with unchurched family and friends. “It’s important to learn more about what the Lutheran Reformation is all about,” he says, “but most important is what God is revealing to us about himself in the Bible.”

Materials will include text studies, suggested sermon outlines, children’s message ideas, music suggestions, worship service outlines, and tips for visitor follow-up.

Download these free resources by early June at wels.net/reformation500.


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Author:
Volume 104, Number 6
Issue: June 2017

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