Reformation 500

Verbum Domini Manet in Aeternum

The Word of the Lord Endures Forever

Visit the LCMS site for Reformation 500 and read about Reformation history, follow a blog, view media, and learn about events and resources: 

In October 2017 Gloria Dei will learn the winning hymn in the LCMS Reformation 2017 Hymn Competition:  “Though All Our Life is Like a Scroll” by Rev. Dr. Wilfred L. Karsten, pastor of Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Moline, Illinois.   Listen to the linked recording  and notice how the hymn combines the Reformation 2017 theme, “It’s Still All About Jesus” with the Reformation Solas (Christ Alone, Grace Alone, Faith Alone, God’s Word alone):  


What’s Happening at Gloria Dei?     


A Lutheran Liturgical Tradition:  Catechetical Services (brief services highlighting and reviewing Luther’s Small Catechism,  not replacing Divine Service with the Lord’s Supper at 10:15 a.m.)

         Sunday October 29, 2017, at 9:15 a.m.



Hymn of the Day for October 8, 2017  LSB 568  “If Your Beloved Son, O God”

The text was written by Johann Heermann (1585-1647).  The tune appeared with text by Martin Luther in the first Lutheran hymnal, Etlich Christlich Lieder (1524).  Heermann was a Lutheran pastor in Koben (Silesia), plundered  four times during the Thirty Years  War (1618-1648), waged as part of the Counter-Reformation  attempt to restore Europe to Roman Catholicism.    In Heermann’s lifetime Koben was also devastated by plague and fire.  He lost all possessions several times and came close to death by drowning and sword.   Heermann’s 162 hymn texts are transitional between the objective doctrinal texts of the Reformation hymnwriters and the more subjective texts of those who followed him.     They reflect confident faith in Christ despite trials and difficulties and are intended to encourage and console the believer.  Listen to a family sing the first two verses of this hymn: 

Hymn of the Month for March 2017   LSB  713 “From God Can Nothing Move Me”

The hymn’s comforting words were written in 1563 by Ludwig Helmbold (1532-1598) as residents fled the plague which killed 4000 residents of Erfurt where he lived.  The tune is a French song, first published in Lyons in 1557.  Hear the text in a wonderful dance-like setting composed by Marc-Antoine Charpentier (c. 1643-1704):

Helmbold also composed a complete metrical version of the Augsburg Confession to be sung by Gymnasium students.                                                                  

Hymn of the Month for February 2017–LSB 585 “Lord Jesus Christ, With Us Abide”

Listen to a festive setting of the hymn at

LSB 585 Verse 1 as originally written in Latin by Philipp Melanchthon

First four words of Verse 1  in German “Ach bleib bei uns” provide name for the tune in LSB

Learn about the hymn’s interesting history at

and at



Hymn of the Month for January 2017

LSB 402  “The Only Son From Heaven” 

Eyn Enchiridion, Erfurt, 1524

The first Lutheran woman hymn writer, Elisabeth Cruciger (c. 1500-1535, nee von Meseritz), was born to Polish nobility in Pomerania.  “Von” signifies that her family was in the class of knights, pledged to fight for their ruler as part of the waning medieval feudal system.  Records at the Marienbusch Abbey convent in Treptow an der Rega indicate she was placed there as a young child.  When the town rector, Johannes Bugenhagen, embraced the Reformation and went to Wittenberg in 1521, Elisabeth followed him and lived in the Bugenhagen household until she married theologian  and Luther editor, Caspar Cruciger,  in 1524.    Elisabeth and Caspar were frequent dinner guests at Luther’s home and he officiated at their wedding.  At Bugenhagen’s request, Prince Frederick the Wise paid for the reception because Elisabeth had been disowned by her family for converting to the teachings of the Lutheran Reformation.  Along with 18 hymns by Martin Luther, Elisabeth Cruciger’s text “The Only Son from Heaven” appears in one of the earliest Lutheran Hymnbooks, the Erfurt Enchiridion of 1524.  It was also translated into English in 1535 and included in Miles Coverdale’s Spiritual Psalms.  The original tune as printed above is based on a Latin Christmas chant.  Listen at