Wednesday, August 31, 2005

more Reformation thoughts

Hi Don,

Well, I've plowed through Chapters 4 and 5 of The Reformation without posting. I am continually impressed with the amount of information MacCulloch is holding together. Some of this information is more familiar than others; Calvin's history in Switzerland vs. the Reformation in Poland and Moldavia.

I am struck by the rapid diffusion and diffraction (if that's the right word) of Reformation ideas. From groups who want to remain Catholic but institute reform, to the Lutheran set, to the ideas that coalesced around Calvin and his cohort, to quite radical ideas which included pacifism and unitarianism. The flow of ideas couldn't be stopped.

The intricacies of theology interacting with political forces cannot be underestimated. Would reconciliation have happened with different personalities and political currents?

So much detail; not even quite sure what else I can summarize or pontificate on, so on to Chapter 6 for me!



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