Monday, March 13, 2006

Prerov - More on Moravia...

This statue depicting a man (not sure who...) holding a bible up for all to see is in the town square of the old part of Prerov. Incredibly, some might say miraculously, it survived the Communist regime who saught to remove signs of religion wherever they could.
Moravia (a region of the Czech Republic) was especially prominent during the early days of the Reformation and Protestantism. A Church historian could probably tell you heaps more than me! A prayer meeting was held around here that ran for about 100 years, which does tend to put the 24/7 movement of a week of solid prayer into context. (Some prayer meetings have felt like 100 years long, but that's another story...)
I assume the sculpture displays Martin Luther's idea of sola Scriptura, that Christians should only really trust the Word of God, and not rely on the pronouncements of the Church. Of course, this was not well received by the Catholic Church, who held all the religious power then. Following the 30 Years War, which was waged to squash these dangerous ideas, Moravian Christians were spread far and wide, taking the seeds of the reformation with them.
Some made it to England, where they converted Charles Wesley, who became an extremely influential preacher and (with his brother, John) hymn writer, he went on to form the Methodist Church. It was with the United Methodists of Western Pennsylvania that I visited Jamaica. And it was a Methodist Minister called William Booth that founded the Salvation Army, which is my own spiritual heritage.
Thank God for those crazy Moravians, for they have allowed me to travel the world, but more importantly, shown the truth of God to the world. They have passed the baton on, now it's our turn...

No comments: