Now showing 1 - 10 of 12
PublicationDepression and the Soul - A Cook's Tour(Lutheran Theological Journal; 44 (2) ) 2010 Pietsch, Stephen
PublicationSeelsorge: A Living Tradition in Pastoral Theology Practice(Lutheran Theological Journal; 43 (1) ) 2009 Pietsch, Stephen
PublicationEgo etiam sum doctor scripturae: an historical and contemporary reflection on Luther’s life and work as ‘doctor of holy scripture’(Lutheran Theological Journal; 48 (3) ) 2014-12 Pietsch, StephenLuther has been styled as many things by scholars and historians: reformer, revolutionary, lunatic, pastor, professor – the list could go on. However, his most frequent self-identification was ‘Doctor’. He himself often called attention to this title and claimed it as his authority and call to preach and teach as he did. The role of ‘doctor’ in Luther’s time was a revival of the New Testament charismatic office of ‘teacher’, i.e. teacher of holy scripture, and that actually is reflected in name of Luther’s doctoral degree – ‘doctor scripturae’. At his doctoral graduation in 1512 he took vows to be just that, a teacher of scripture, who taught in full accord with the Bible and also defended the church against all strange and unbiblical teachings. Stephen Pietsch shows how this identity and vocation shaped Luther, his theology and writing profoundly throughout his career, especially at key moments. He also briefly reflects on how today’s ‘doctors of the church’ in the Lutheran tradition might receive and embody Luther’s legacy as teachers of scripture.
PublicationExploring “Transformation” in Luther Studies(Lutheran Forum; 49 (1) ) 2015 Pietsch, Stephen
PublicationDangerous political propaganda or passionate prophetic speech? An alternative reading of Luther’s 1520 treatise, To the Christian nobility of the German nation concerning the reform of the Christian estate(Lutheran Theological Journal; 48 (2) ) 2014-08 Pietsch, StephenWas Luther’s passionate polemical language in his appeal to the German nobility in 1520 really a major cause of the German Peasant Revolt, as is so popularly believed? Was he intentionally or unintentionally calling for revolution and the overturning of the feudal economy? In reply to Peter Burgard’s 2008 article, ‘Masterful Rhetoric: the Logic or Authority and Subjection in Luther’ which reiterates these old accusations against Luther, Stephen Pietsch offers an alternative reading of Luther’s treatise. He argues that much of the blame laid at Luther’s door has been based on false and anachronistic readings of the 1520 treatise, and that careful and properly contextualised rhetorical analysis shows it to be theologically prophetic speech rather than politically inflammatory propaganda.
PublicationLuther@500: Martin Luther's Theology Past, Present and Future2019 Hultgren, Stephen ; Pietsch, Stephen ; Silcock, Jeffrey ; Hultgren, Stephen ; Pietsch, Stephen ; Silcock, JeffreyThe Luther@500 anniversary may be behind us, but Luther stands ahead of us in many ways. The essays in this volume by an international group of scholars begin with a contextual discussion of Luther’s definitive contribution to the Wittenberg Reformation and its significance for us today. New light is shed on old issues across a range of topics. But these essays do not stay in the past. Many also engage critically with contemporary issues in Luther interpretation and a few boldly trace the trajectory of Luther’s reformational theology into the future.
PublicationOf Good Comfort, Martin Luther’s Letters to the Depressed and their Significance for Pastoral Care Today2016 Pietsch, StephenThis is a feast for theologians, historians and Christian counsellors. Pietsch examines 21 of Luther's letters of comfort to explore Luther's pastoral care for souls suffering with depression. Pietsch uses interdisciplinary tools of inquiry artfully to examine the letters, Luther's pastoral care approaches and the history of the melancholy tradition. The practice of seelsorge emerges as an amalgam of art, spiritual gift, and understanding of affliction, all resting comfortably within the authority of scripture and the Lutheran Confessions. Pietsch's volume is a significant contribution to spiritual care literature, underscoring the conviction of the early church that individual soul care is an essential response to serve those who despair. Offering pivotal pastoral care insights that are often lost, discredited or entirely absent in the work of caring for those who suffer with depression, Pietsch concludes that Luther has given us excellent tools to examine, learn and to teach as we assist souls to find hope, strength and healing in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Professor Beverly Yahnke Concordia University Wisconsin Executive Director of Christian Counsel, Doxology Lutheran Centre for Spiritual Care and Counsel.
PublicationLuther@500 and beyond2019 Pietsch, Stephen ; Pietsch, Stephen ; Hultgren, Stephen ; Silcock, Jeffrey
PublicationLuther Comforts a Depressed Pastor: Luther’s Letter of Consolation to George Spalatin – Analysis and Reflection(Lutheran Theological Journal; 45 (3) ) 2011 Pietsch, StephenThe addressee of the following letter of consolation, George Spalatin, was one of Luther's intimate and long term friends. As a canon of the Cathedral at Altenburg in 1544, Spalatin had been party to advice given to a local pastor that it was permissible for him to marry the stepmother of his deceased wife. The advice was incorrect and Luther later had to countermand Spalatin's decision. Distressed and humiliated by his mistake, Spalatin fell into deep depression and could not be comforted. When Luther heard of this, he wrote this letter of consolation to help his old friend recover.
PublicationLuther and the cure of Souls(Logia; Vol 30, No 2 (Eastertide 2021) ) 2021-04-16 Pietsch, StephenLuther's most important role in the Reformation and in the church's narrative generally is that of 'pastor'. Formed in the monastery as a carer of souls and mentored by Johann von Staupitz, his own confessor, Luther grew into a spiritual shepherd. This shaped his whole theology and was the impulse that sparked his objection to the sale of indulgences in 1517 - the event that sparked the Reformation movement. Luther was shaped, like his contemporaries, by the great pastoral writers and traditions of the early medieval church. He has mastered the rhetorical arts of 'consolation'. He was deeply influenced by Gregory the Great, Bernard of Clairvaux and others. The unique contribution of Luther is his 'theology of the cross' - the teaching that God's mercy is revealed to us in his, and also in our own, deepest suffering.