Reformation at 500


What Happens When Lightning Strikes

500 years ago, a brilliant young monk whose quest for a merciful God and deep theological discoveries bumped up against papal authority, the sale of indulgences, and social discontent. Martin Luther was that man. The resulting storms of cultural and ecclesiastical change swept Europe and impacted the whole world.

Aided by social media tools of his time – the Gutenberg press and prolific “cartoonists” such as Lucas Cranach – his message went viral. Today, church and society are still absorbing the changes he wrought even as a new, revolutionary age is underway.

Reformation@500-Corvallis is a campus- and community-wide observance that probes the depth of Luther’s theological wrestling, the intertwining relationship between religion and civic life, and artistic expressions that accompanied – even promulgated – his reforming ideals.

Join friends, neighbors, and community members for one or all of the free, public activities listed below. Return to this site often for program updates as fall approaches.

May lightning strike again in our time!

Schedule of Programs

  • Corvallis Repertory Singers

    Sunday, October 1, 3:00 pm

    First United Methodist Church (1165 NW Monroe Ave, Corvallis); Program includes Ein Feste Burg ist Unser Gott, BSV 80, & Palestrina, Missa Papae Marcelli; Dr. Stephen Zielke, director. Ticket required (purchase tickets).

  • Reformation Hymn Sing

    Sunday, October 8, 3:00 pm

    First United Methodist Church (1165 NW Monroe Ave, Corvallis); Called, Gathered, Enlightened, Inspired featuring: Dr. Paul Klemme, music director, St. Paul Episcopal Church, Salem; Jim Davidson, music director, First United Methodist Church, Corvallis; Christopher Buckley, music director, Grace Lutheran Church, Corvallis; brass choir with tympani; and chorus. Refreshments follow program. Free.

  • Dr. David Luft — The Reformation of Jan Hus and the Moravians

    Thursday, October 12, 7:00-8:30 pm

    Dr. Luft is the Horning Professor of History at OSU. OSU C&E Auditorium in the LaSells Stewart Center (parking info); Free.

  • Joanna Reiling Lindell — Art of the Reformation

    Tuesday, October 17, 7:00-8:30 pm

    Director and Curator, The Thrivent Financial Collection of Religious Art, OSU C&E Auditorium in the LaSells Stewart Center (parking info). Refreshments follow presentation.

  • Dr. Kurt Hendel —  Martin Luther: Man, Monk, Scholar, Transformer

    Thursday, October 26, 4:00-5:30 pm

    Dr. Hendel is the Bernard, Fischer, Westberg Distinguished Ministry Emeritus Professor of Reformation History at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. Grace Lutheran Church. Free.

  • Community Conversation with Dr. Kurt Hendel

    Friday, October 27, 9:30-11:00 am

    Grace Lutheran Church Fireside Room. Refreshments will be served. Free.

  • Ekaterina Lomperis —  Reforming Our Life in the Body: Martin Luther on Eating, Healing, and Marriage,

    Tuesday, November 7, 7:00 pm

    Ekaterina Lomperis is a doctoral candidate at the University of Chicago Divinity School and Fellow at the Martin Marty Institute for Advanced Study of Religion. OSU C&E Auditorium in the LaSells Stewart Center (parking info). Refreshments follow presentation; Free.

  • Luther the film

    Friday, November 17, 7:00 pm

    Dr. Chris Stehr, moderator; OSU Milam Auditorium. Free.

  • OSU Symphony Orchestra

    Monday, November 20, 7:30 pm

    Our Judeo-Romano-Christian Heritage, includes Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 5, Reformation, Dr. Marlan Carlson, director; Austin Auditorium, LaSells Stewart Center. Tickets required (purchase tickets) students free with ticket.

  • Luther: An Idea that Changed the World (film)

    Friday, December 1 7:00 pm

    Introduced by Jodi Mammenga, Thrivent Financial. First Baptist Church, corner of 10th and Monroe Ave., Corvallis. Light refreshments provided. Free.

Related Activities

  • Tuesday, April 18

    Lutheran Campus Ministry at OSU and the Grace Lutheran Church Youth planted a commemorative tree in the Lutheran World Federation’s Luthergarten at Wittenberg, Germany. May 14 a companion tree was planted at Luther House.

  • September 29-October 1

    Saint Mark Lutheran Church (Salem), Faith Dialogue Series featuring Dr. Samuel Torvend, Professor of Religion at Pacific Lutheran University

  • Saturday, September 30, 7:00pm

    Trinity Cathedral, Portland, The National Lutheran Choir, Jesus Christ Yesterday, Today and Forever: The Church in Reform; Information and tickets

  • Fall Term, 2017

    History 330, Early Modern Europe: The Reformation, will be offered on the OSU campus Fall Quarter on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday (9/20/17-12/1/17), 10-11:20 a.m. The instructor is Professor Gary Ferngren.

  • Friday, October 27-Sunday, October 29

    Dr. Kurt Hendel, Chi Rho Lectures, Central Lutheran Church (Eugene).

  • Sunday, October 29, 3:00pm

    First Presbyterian Choir: A Reformation Concert

  • Sunday, October 29, 3:00pm

    Reformation Sunday Service of Prayer and Preaching; Zion Lutheran Church, 2745 NW Harrison Blvd., Corvallis

  • Fall/Winter 2018

    Horning Lectures sponsored by the School of History, Philosophy, and Religion:

    • Euan Cameron speaking on the idea of what reform meant in the 16th century (Winter, 2018)
    • Howard Louthan speaking on the Catholic Reformation (late Winter or April, 2018)
    • David Sorkin speaking on Reform Judaism (May, 2018).

Questions & Inquires

Contact us at or 541-753-5213