On May 18, 2016, the choir of the Sistine Chapel gave a concert in Wittenberg, northern Germany, in the church of Martin Luther.
On May 18, 2016, the choir of the Sistine Chapel, founded 1600 years ago by Pope St. Gregory the Great, gave a concert in Wittenberg, northern Germany, in the church of Martin Luther (1483 – 1546). In the context of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, in 2017, the presence of the choir of the Basilica of St. Peter’s in Rome in St. Mary’s Church where Luther preached, takes on an “ecumenical” musical aspect.
The Reformation dates from the day that Martin Luther addressed 95 theses to the archbishop of Mainz in protest against the Catholic Church, by posting them on the door of the church of Wittenberg, on October 31, 1517. At the end of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, on January 25, 2016, the Holy See Press Office announced that Pope Francis would travel to Sweden in October 2016 in order to participate in an ecumenical celebration of the anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. On October 31, in the city of Lund, Sweden, where the Lutheran World Federation was founded in 1947, the Pope will participate in a joint celebration organized by the Lutheran Church of Sweden and the Catholic diocese of Stockholm, one year to the day before the anniversary of the beginning of the Reformation launched by Martin Luther.
Yet “we Catholics have no reason to celebrate October 31, 1517, the date considered the beginning of the Reformation that resulted in the rupture of Western Christianity,” according to Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, in an interview in book format called Informe sobre la esperanza. Diálogo con el cardenal Gerhard Ludwig Müller [Interview on hope. Dialogue with Cardinal Ludwig Müller], published in March 2016 by Spanish publishing house Biblioteca de Autores Cristianos (BAC) [Library of Christian authors]. The German cardinal recalls that:
if we are convinced that divine revelation is preserved entire and unchanged in Scripture and Tradition, in the doctrine of the Faith, in the sacraments, in the hierarchical constitution of the Church by divine right, founded on the sacrament of Holy Orders, then we cannot accept that there are in existence sufficient reasons to separate oneself from the Church.”
(Sources: kipa-apic.ch – Chiesa – Vatican – DICI no. 336, 27/05/16)