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ANABAPTIST BEGINNINGS. 16 th Century Life:. A life dominated by the union of…. Church. and State. Tower from 12 th century. Cologne Cathedral. symbolized by Cathedrals and Castles. State. Church. Bacharach, Germany. St. James Cathedral. Innsbruck, Austria. ceiling. pipe organ.

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Presentation Transcript
slide1

ANABAPTIST

BEGINNINGS

slide2

16th Century Life:

A life dominated by the union of…

Church

and State

Tower from 12th century

Cologne Cathedral

slide4

State

Church

slide6

St. James Cathedral

Innsbruck, Austria

slide8

ceiling

pipe organ

chancel

slide9

Strasbourg Cathedral

Rosetta Window

slide10

Church and State

St. Gallen’s

Thun Castle

slide11

Cathedrals and Castles

Steinsburg Castle

Church tower at Ulm (786 steps)

slide12

Paid for by Taxe$ and Tithe$

Alcase region of France

slide13

“If I had been a peasant in the 16th century I think I too might

have joined the “Peasant’s War” or become an Anabaptist.”

Pallatinate in southern Germany

slide16

The city of Reformer

Ulrich Zwingli

(Note that he is holding both

Sword and Bible)

slide18

…Zwingli led a Bible study

with a group of young radicals

slide20

January 21, 1525

Grebel baptizes

George Blaurock in the

upper room of this house…

…and a movement is born

slide21

The consequences…

Blaurock is driven out of town … Grebel and others are imprisoned

slide22

Felix Manz is drowned

In the Limmat River

slide27

Despite and because of persecution the movement spread to the Alsace region of France, The Palatinate of Germany, Austria and Moravia, and eventually to North America.

Palatinate

Austria

Alsace

slide28

The German / Austrian

Anabaptist Movement

Achenpas, view from Germany to Austria

slide29

The very same day that Conrad Grebel was baptizing in Zurich, another young man, Hans Denck, was being kicked out of the town of Nuremberg in southern Germany for similar radical ideas…

“No one can truly know Christ unless they follow him in life.”

slide30

Conrad Grebel, Hans Denck and many other early Anabaptist leaders were dead before they reached the age of 30.

“The more beautiful the countryside the harsher the persecution.”

-John Sharp

Austrian Alps

slide31

The home of a unique Anabaptist leader:

Pilgram Marpeck, engineer and lay theologian

slide32

Marpeck was a prominent citizen when he became an Anabaptist.

At one point about 2/3 of the people in the Inn Valley were Anabaptist,

but in 1528 there was a crackdown and numerous executions.

Pilgram Marpeck disappeared.

Inn River

slide33

Marpeck later reappeared in Strasbourg and then

Augsurg, continuing his Anabaptist leadership as well as civic leadership.

Ruins above Rattenberg

slide34

60+ Anabaptists were

martyred in Rattenberg

slide35

Helena of Freyburg was

another prominent

German Anabaptist

who hosted a

church in a

Castle.

slide36

Jakob Hutter was executed

in the castle of Emperor Maximilian I,

now a trendy and thriving public market

in Innsbruck, Austria

slide37

Inside the castle…

The plaque in his memory

The market square

slide39

The tower

where…

Jakob Hutter

was imprisoned

slide40

The execution site

(note plaque below)

m

slide41

The “Golden Roof” of the

emperor’s veranda where he and his attendants could watch festivities,

including executions.

slide42

Although the Hutterites grew to 20,000+ by the end of the 16th century, persecution was so severe and effective in this area that virtually all Anabaptists were eliminated.

Only about a dozen

followers of Jakob Hutter remained at the end of the 17th century.

slide44

Anabaptism came to the Netherlands later than to

Switzerland and Germany, but it found a fertile soil.

Rural countryside in Friesland

slide46

and later in nearby

Witmarsum, his

home town.

slide47

Some distance away in the

City of Munster…

slide48

…the Anabaptist Movement was going horribly awry.

Some leaders who thought themselves prophets and kings called on followers to take up arms (and wives) in preparation for the End Times.

A sculpture in Munster:

(Note: apocalyptic images, a walled Munster and tools of violence.

slide49

The same sculpture with the “Apocalypse” under his left arm… Perhaps contemplating the horrors of apocalyptic violence.

slide50

It was not long and the powers of church and state

put down the revolution as violently as it arose.

St. Paul’s Cathedral

Hall of Westphalia

slide51

The 3 main leaders were executed and their remains

hung from the tower of St. Lambert’s Cathedral in

3 cages which hang there to this day.

slide52

The day I visited Munster and saw the cages,

my tears mixed with the rain as I wept for the cycle

of violence which was perpetuated on that day

in the name of Christ.

slide53

Jesus absorbed and abolished

violence centuries earlier

The same sculpture as seen earlier

slide54

The example of Christ and the events of Munster so impacted Menno Simons that he left the comfort of the priesthood and became an Anabaptist leader.

At the Menno Simons monument near Witmarsum

where he apparently preached his first evangelical sermon

slide55

Menno’s Motto

on his monument

slide56

As a leader of the Anabaptists, Menno was constantly

on the run, often preaching and worshiping in secret.

The “Hidden Church” at Pingjum

slide57

Dutch Anabaptists became known as Mennists or Mennonites. Persecution and migration caused them to scatter along the coast to northern Germany and Prussia [Poland] with the majority eventually migrating to Russia [Ukraine] at the invitation of the czar in 1789. Most of the Mennonites from there found their way to North or South America beginning in the 1870’s and especially following the Bolshevik Revolution and the great wars in Germany and eastern Europe in the 20th century.

Painting (Circa 1824)

Hanging in Witmarsum Meetinghouse

slide58

If the Anabaptist movement had an icon it might be this picture

and this story of Dirk Willems from Martyrs Mirror

slide59

Dirk Willems was captured as an Anabaptist and imprisoned in this church tower in Asperen, Netherlands.

slide60

He escaped and was crossing a pond of thin ice when his pursuer fell through. Instead of, “Hallelujah! God saved me!” he turned around to rescue his pursuer.

slide61

Of course his pursuer was grateful and wanted to save his life but the Magistrate would have none of it. He was later executed on this spot at the Leerdam River just outside Asperen in 1569.

slide62

How do we respond

to our salvation?

Stairs leading away from the site

slide63

Reflections on the

Anabaptist Movement

Today

slide64

What is it that sets people free?

Entrance to Dachau Concentration Camp

slide66

Dachau Concentration Camp is a few centuries away from the Anabaptist Movement but there are some related theological themes. As with Munster, here too was the deadly brew of “Christianity” mixed with exclusive and fervent nationalism. Yet the essence of the Anabaptist Movement was about a church free from the violent powers of the state.

slide67

“All the terrible things the Nazi’s did would have been impossible were it not for the silence, complicity and passivity of the state church in Germany at the time.”(John Sharp)

slide72

Jesus brought peace…

destroying the barriers

and the dividing

walls of hostility…

His purpose was to create

one new humanity…

to reconcile all people

to God through the cross.

(Ephesians 2:14-16)

A small sculpture in the Roman

Catholic chapel at Dachau

slide73

Q

May we be a witness to that peace today.

Bench in The Hague at International Court of Justice and Peace Park

slide74

The Anabaptist Movement is now

global with 1.9 million participants

in 1000’s of churches in 70+

countries on 6 continents.

Strasbourg, France, home of Mennonite World Conference offices