2017 Reformation Studies Tour

2017 marks the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther nailing his 95 Theses to the door of the Schlosskirche (Castle Church) in Wittenberg, Germany. Join Central Baptist Theological Seminary’s President Matt Morrell and Professor of Historical Theology Jeff Straub as we visit some of the key sites of the Protestant Reformation in Germany, France and Switzerland. There is an optional trip extension to Rome, April 8-12 to see the “Eternal City” with its grand cathedrals and ancient ruins. It was after a visit to Rome that Martin Luther began to question the teaching of the Church.

Students have the option of taking this trip for credit at the seminary.

Information on the Rome extension is available from the Seminary at reformation2017@centralseminary.edu.

Day 1: Depart USA
Overnight flight to Berlin, Germany.

Day 2: Arrive Berlin, Wittenberg
Willkommen in Deutschland! On arrival in Berlin we take a short panoramic tour of the city and then travel to Wittenberg and our hotel for the next two nights.

Day 3: Wittenberg
This morning our local guide will take us on a tour of Lutherstadt Wittenberg. It was here in 1517 that Martin Luther nailed his famous 95 Theses and Melanchthon helped forge Reformation Theology. Here the Cranachs painted now famous portraits of Luther. We will spend time in the Lutherhalle (Luther House) Museum, where Luther lived first as a monk, then later with his wife and children. We'll be able to view some of Luther's very own personal library, rare manuscripts, and early Bibles. The tour will also include Castle Church, Stadtkirche St. Marien (St. Mary's Church) where Luther preached and where his children were baptized and the Luther Oak where he burned the edict from Rome, condemning him as a heretic.

Day 4: Erfurt, Augustinian Monastery
After breakfast we will travel to Erfurt, then have free time for lunch and a stroll around this delightful medieval town. Our local guide will then take us on a tour including St. Mary’s Cathedral, St. Severin’s Church and the famous Merchant’s Bridge. We will end at the Augustinian Monastery where Luther became a monk on July 17, 1505. We will be able to see his monastic quarters, including one cell furnished to look as it would have been when he lived there. At the end of the tour we will have a group worship service in the chapel. Overnight in Erfurt.

Day 5: Eisenach
In 1521, while fleeing from the wrath of the Pope, Luther took refuge in Wartburg Castle after a fake kidnapping staged by his friend and protector, Frederick the Wise. We will tour Wartburg Castle and see where Luther finished translating the New Testament into German in just 11 weeks. Luther spent time in the nearby town of Eisenach as a school boy and sang in the choir of St. George's Church, where the Bach family also worshiped. Later we travel to Frankfurt for our overnight stay.

Day 6: Worms, Strasbourg
Our guide in Worms will take us to see the amazing Cathedral, followed by the site of Luther’s Worms Debates (Diet of Worms), now a park, with a plaque commemorating Luther’s brave stand of faith and truth. We’ll have a photo stop at the stunning Reformation Monument and follow this with worship and prayers in the Church of the Holy Trinity. We will then travel into France to visit Strasbourg, referred to as the “City of Hope” and “Refuge of the Righteous” by the Anabaptists. This is where John Calvin wrote his famous books on systematic theology and where Martin Bucer, another Reformation leader, helped bring in the Reformation. We will have a stroll around the city centre to view the Cathedral of Strasbourg, St. Thomas's Church, and charming “La Petite France” quarter.

Day 7: Constance, Zurich
Today we’ll have breakfast in France, lunch in Germany and dinner in Switzerland! In Constance, we will pray on the spot where the pre-Reformer Jan Hus was martyred, see the cathedral where the trial was held, and the prison site, which is now a deluxe hotel. Crossing over into Switzerland, we’ll meet up with our guide in Zurich, to learn about Zwingli and the Anabaptists on a tour of the key Reformation sites in Zurich. We’ll tour the Grossmünster, the Helferei (where Zwingli lived) and see the Zwingli Statue.

Day 8: Geneva
We will stop for coffee in medieval Murten, where we can walk atop the original city walls and explore another chapter of Swiss history. We then continue to Geneva where Calvin, Knox, Farel and others brought Christ's teachings to eager listeners. Our tour will begin at the impressive Reformation Monument. Four statues of four Reformation leaders stand as sentinels to truth and courage inspired by godly faith. We will see Calvin’s Church, the Auditoire de Calvin, (Calvin's Academy, also known as The Protestant Lecture Hall), where the inspired theologian himself taught. Next door is St. Pierre’s Cathedral, where John Calvin preached. We can see his chair and a restored section decorated as it would have been before Calvin. For the hardy, it's only 157 steps up to the top of the North Tower, where the view is worth the effort. Our final stop is an audio guide tour through the incredible Reformation Museum. Below the museum and the Cathedral, we can see the ruins of a Roman sanctuary, a 4th century basilica, and a 6th century church.

Day 9: Return Home or Continue to Rome
We transfer to the airport early this morning for our flight home or onto Rome.

Day 9-12: Rome (Optional)

Itinerary subject to change while touring
for the best interest of the group.

COST (based on double occupancy): $3,289.00 subject to change