The Reformation of Suffering: Pastoral Theology and Lay Piety in Late Medieval and Early Modern…

Hardcover | July 16, 2012

byRonald K. Rittgers

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Protestant reformers sought to effect a radical change in the way their contemporaries understood and coped with the suffering of body and soul that were so prominent in the early modern period. The reformers did so because they believed that many traditional approaches to suffering were notsufficiently Christian - that is, they thought these approaches were unbiblical. The Reformation of Suffering examines the Protestant reformation of suffering and shows how it was a central part of the larger Protestant effort to reform church and society. Despite its importance, no other text has directly examined this reformation of suffering. This book investigates the history of Christian reflection on suffering and consolation in the Latin West and places the Protestant reformation campaign within this larger context, paying close attention toimportant continuities and discontinuities between Catholic and Protestant traditions. Focusing especially on Wittenberg Christianity, The Reformation of Suffering examines the genesis of Protestant doctrines of suffering among the leading reformers and then traces the transmission of these doctrines from the reformers to the common clergy. It also examines the reception of theseideas by lay people. The text underscores the importance of consolation in early modern Protestantism and seeks to challenge a scholarly trend that has emphasized the themes of discipline and control in Wittenberg Christianity. It shows how Protestant clergymen and burghers could be remarkablycreative and resourceful as they sought to convey solace to one another in the midst of suffering and misfortune. The Protestant reformation of suffering had a profound impact on church and society in the early modern period and contributed significantly to the shape of the modern world.

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Protestant reformers sought to effect a radical change in the way their contemporaries understood and coped with the suffering of body and soul that were so prominent in the early modern period. The reformers did so because they believed that many traditional approaches to suffering were notsufficiently Christian - that is, they though...

Ronald K. Rittgers is Erich Markel Chair in German Reformation Studies, Professor of History and Professor of Theology at Valparaiso University.

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Hardcover|Mar 15 2004

$95.15 online$97.50list price
Format:HardcoverDimensions:448 pages, 9.25 × 6.12 × 0.98 inPublished:July 16, 2012Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199795088

ISBN - 13:9780199795086

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Table of Contents

A Note on UsageIntroduction1. Consolation in Rite and Word in the Later Middle Ages2. The Consolation Tradition in the Latin Church3. Suffering and Consolation in Late Medieval Mysticism4. Suffering and Salvation in the Early Luther5. Suffering and the Theology of the Cross6. Early Evangelical Consolation Literature7. Pastoral Care of the Sick and Suffering in the Evangelical Church Ordinances8. Later Evangelical Consolation Literature I9. Later Evangelical Consolation Literature II10. Lay Suffering and SolaceConclusionAppendix: Select Early Modern Protestant Works of Consolation and Devotion Arranged Alphabetically by Author with Number of Extant Editions in the German LandsAbbreviationsNotesBibliographyIndex