Reformation 500 News from St Matthew

Reformation 500 Commemoration Events

The movie: Luther (2003)

On July 19 the biographical movie depicting key events in the life of Martin Luther was screened at the Tivoli Theatre in Cambridge with a full house present. Light refreshments were served prior to the screening of the movie. In the movie Joseph Fiennes played the role of Martin Luther, a 16th century monk who led the Christian Reformation and opened up new possibilities in exploration of faith. The film began with his vow to become a monk, and continued through his struggles to reconcile his desire for sanctification with his increasing abhorrence of the corruption and hypocrisy pervading the Church's hierarchy. He was ultimately charged with heresy and had to confront the ruling cardinals and princes, urging them to make the Scriptures available to the common believer and lead the Church toward faith through justice and righteousness.

Thank you to all who attended to share fellowship and the movie. We have heard that the movie is still being talked about.

Friends of Hospital Chaplaincy Concert:

This annual concert  at the Chapel of Christ the King at St Paul's Collegiate began with a 6 minute presentation on the Reformation 500 theme by Pr John Davison from St Matthew Lutheran Church. An hour and a half of high quality musical items in a variety of genres followed the presentation. There was something to appeal to everyone with instrumental, choral and solo items.

Sharing our Stories : From Conflict to Communion

Pr Jim Pietsch connected the the beginning of the Lutheran Church at the Reformation with the existence of the Lutheran Church in New Zealand in the modern age with about 60 people, Lutheran, Catholic and others, at St Matthew on Thursday, 26th October. The history of the Catholic Church, the time of the reformation and the history of Catholicism in New Zealand was presented by Sr. Carmel Walsh. Bishop Steve Lowe was present, along with a good number of Catholic folk and a few from other church traditions. Good fellowship was enjoyed afterwards over a cupper

Ecumenical Service : From Conflict to Communion


About 150 people gathered at The Cathedral of the Blessed Virgin Mary on Friday evening on the 27th October to commemorate the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation. Bishop Steve Lowe and Pr John Davison led the prayer service with a small choir and school singing group and organist leading the music. 5 candles were lit representing the five imperatives for our ecumenical endeavours. 1. Catholics and Lutherans should always being from the perspective of unity and not from thepoint of view of division, in order to strengthen what is held in common, even though the differences are more easily seen and experienced. 2. Lutherans and Catholics must let themselves continuously be transformed by the encounter with the other and by the mutual witness of faith. 3. Catholics and Lutherans should again commit themselves to seek visible unity, to elaborate together what this means in concrete steps, and to strive repeatedly toward this goal. 4. Lutherans and Catholics should jointly rediscover the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, for our time. 5. Catholics and Lutherans should witness together to the mercy of God in proclamation and service to the world.  God fellowship was enjoyed afterwards with a cupper.

Reformation 500 Conference

A series of workshops, presentations, exhibitions and other events exploring the nature and impact of the Reformation on our communities was held at the Meteor Theatre from the 29th-31st October. Papers presented engaged in a dialogical process that enriched understanding of the ongoing significance of (re-)formative ideas and practices in religion and society. Pr Jim Pietsch (from Wellington) asked Pr John Davison to present his paper "The Reformation Discovery: Reclaiming Grace" to the conference. On the Monday evening a Reformation concert was presented at St Peter's Cathedral.

Reformation 500 Celebration

An Saturday evening, the 4th November a musical celebration introduced by Bishop Mark Whitfield (Bishop of the Lutheran Church of New Zealand) was enjoyed by 75 people at the Chapel of Christ the King at St Paul's Collegiate. Bishop Mark and two young organists played and the Hamilton Community Gospel Choir shared their musical gifting while Dr Norman Franke shared poetry reflecting on three Reformers: Martin Luther, Johann Amos Comenius and Rolan Geipel

Still to Come:

Martin Luther (1953) Screening


The original classic of Luther's life which was released in 1953 and nominated for an Acadamy Award. 105 minutes long in black and white the movie traces Martin Luther's life from a guilt burdened monk through the monumental events which led to his break with the Roman Church. There will be Supper (please bring a plate) and a short Quizz after the movie.

St Matthew Lutheran Church

27 Abbotsford Street

Whitiora Hamilton

Saturday 18th November

7:00pm – Koha