WAPAKONETA — Oct. 31, 2017, will mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Pope Francis is inaugurating the yearlong commemoration with a visit this October to the Lutheran community in Sweden, with activities planned for the next 12 months as well.
From Conflict to Communion is a document created jointly by the World Lutheran Federation and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity to help Roman Catholics and Lutherans better understand one another and appreciate how far they have journeyed together toward unity since 1517.
This week members of local Catholic and Lutheran congregations will inaugurate five-session small group studies of From Conflict to Communion. The effort is organized by the Northwest Ohio Synod of the Evanglical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Toledo in cooperation with the Archdiocese of Cincinnati (for Auglaize and Mercer counties’ participation).
Local Catholics and Lutherans currently have the opportunity to participate in one of two tracks:
• Weekly on Tuesdays from 1 to 2:30 p.m., beginning Oct. 11 at First English Lutheran Church, Wapakoneta, (five sessions from Oct. 11 through November 8.); os
• Monthly on Thursdays from 7 to 8:30 p.m., beginning Thursday, Oct. 6, at Trinity Lutheran Church, Moulton. (Five sessions on the first Thursday of each month from October through February.)
Participating congregations include First English Lutheran Church (Wapakoneta), St. Mark’s Lutheran Church (Wapakoneta), Trinity Lutheran Church (Moulton), and the Petersburg Parishes of Botkins Immaculate Conception, Fryburg St. John, Rhine St. Lawrence and Wapakoneta St. Joseph.
Those interested in participating may still sign up by contacting the church office of any participating congregation. There is no charge to participate, but organizers ask for RSVPs in order to prepare enough reading materials.