Monday, October 19, 2009

Reformation Day Celebration

We have been busy studying the Reformation at the Fuentes household. It is an amazing thing to learn about Christian history especially when you are a first generation Christian. I don't ever remember the Reformation being taught in school and now I am grateful for a chance to dig deeper as I educate my children on their Christian roots.

As I sifted through the thought that mothers are the memory makers of their homes and children's lives-- I wanted to take this opportunity to begin a new tradition at our home. Starting this year we will anticipate our first Reformation Celebration.

The 95 Theses were nailed on the door at Wittenberg, German on October 31, 1517 by Martin Luther. A profound moment for our faith, this act would shake Europe to its foundation and cause great religious divide and spiritual freedom for so many. Which is why I want my children to remember the example set before them-- to remember that it takes one person to change the world.

In the past, Oct. 31st was used to pass out tracts but when the costumes became too gruesome for my little ones, we stopped. Before all of this, we had also watched a video about the origins of Halloween from Moody Bible Bookstore and was convicted that we personally wouldn't take part of it. Now we have a wonderful way to celebrate the day--to remember the sacrifices of our reforming and courageous spiritual forefathers.

World magazine had a great article examining some of the origins of Halloween and how to celebrate Reformation day that I highly recommend that you read here: Reformation Day

I did some research too and here are some ideas of what we are going to do for that day:

Dress up in costume (have a skit, try to guess who we are),
hold a medieval banquet (with authentic German food)
and playing German music in the background


Sing the Battle Hymn of the Reformation "Almighty Fortress is our God"/or use this song to play musical chairs/who can build castles out of legos quickest
Boffer Wars
Pin the Theses on the Door (blindfolded)
Bows and arrow event/tug of war (Reformers vs. Cardinals of course!)
Bonfire with storytelling about the Reformation
Indulgences relay race throwing indulgences in the trash

Daddy can teach about our thankful to our forefathers and their hefty sacrifices that led to religious freedom today. This is a wonderful experience for all! Here are some helpful links:

-includes Medieval games, costumes, recipes

Doorposts offers a book I'm looking forward to getting:

We took a week off of 'regular' school to focus on this period and do a Unit Study on the Reformation, I have heard of others taking a month or more. We still incorporated math, spelling, literature, vocabulary, creative writing etc. into our history lesson.

You can view our Reformation Unit study here.

We will also be watching this October 31st:

(Be sure to turn off the music in the sidebar!)


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Green Gardening Girl said...

Every year our church hosts a celebration! We love going!

We also love your blog!

Jasmine said...

June, this is a wonderful post regarding the reformation. I have been wanting to study this period and now you have given me some valuable resources.

Thank you.

Mary at Civilla's Cyber Cafe said...

We live in a Lutheran-dominated remote area and I never heard of Reformation Day until I started blogging. Interesting.

The Watts Family said...

Very interesting~ I have not heard of this before..... ~I am going to read that article ~Thanks for sharing. :D

Rhonda Devine said...

We, too, have been getting ready--working on costumes for the faire and reading Luther's bio. Highly recommend the "Luther" movie as well~one of our favorites!
Well said--forget Halloween~what an exciting celebration--the nailing of the 95 theses on Oct 31st!
FYI, we just learned an interesting fact about Luther we didn't know--he is buried under the floor where the pulpit sits in the very church where he nailed those 95 theses on the door~is that cool, or what?

cherub said...

June, your blog is beautiful.I love the music you have selected for your blog.I am follower of your blog

Mary said...

June, thank you so much for posting this. I have studied about the Reformation in the was an unbelievable time in history, one that opened the floodgates for our religious freedom, praise God. I did not know about a Reformation Celebration...I am going to mention it to our pastor. I haven't heard of any churches around here doing it...they will have "harvest" parties for the children, but nothing really representative of our Christian heritage. Thanks, too, for the video clip. I'm not waiting til the 31st to see it...on my way this evening to get it. There were a couple of lines in that also rang true of our political system today. I want to go back and read your links. Wonderful and much needed post.

God bless,

Allison said...

Thank you so much for this wonderful information about Reformation Day!

Teena said...

Thank you... We have been celebrating the reformation for a bit too.

That book by Doorposts is very good.

We will do a Reformation Day Treasure Hunt this year!

Mrs. June Fuentes said...


How wonderful! What kind of treasure hunt will you be doing?

Many blessings...

Ellen said...

I am so glad you posted gave such wonderful resources...a great way to celebrate my daughters birthday which falls on the 31st.

Manda said...

Luther really had a heart for God and his fellow man and his acts of boldness are commendable, however I would recommend that you read through the 95 thesis with your children as well and make note of his beliefs at the time he posted it. It's crucial to understand a historical time period before making it a tradition that will be passed on to future generations.

Manda said...

Btw, I've been frequenting your blog for a few months and have been SO encouraged. I wanted to thank you for spurring me on to be the heart of my home.

Thunder said...

Hi June,

First time commentor, long time reader.

I really enjoy how courageously you live your life, and what a beautiful model of femininity you are.

Until reading this post, I had never considered not celebrating Halloween, but I am going to look into. Our son is only one, but it won't be long before we need to sort this out.

On another note, as a Catholic who reads your site, this particular post was a bit of a turn-off. As something of a historian, I am aware that Luther did shake things up, and he did push the Catholic Church to make much needed reforms. But ultimately, the schism lead to today's situation where there are over 20,000 different Protestant sects (and still only one Catholic Church).

The Catholic Church is the only major Christian religion that denounces contraception, abortion, and fornication. I have never met a Protestant whose Church spoke out against these evils. Certainly, individuals like yourself do speak out, but not entire churches, and not the major influential ones. The Church does so, with authority, and without apology.

When humans get to make their own rules (I don't like the church founded by Christ, so I'll go start a new one over here that suits me better), it doesn't take long for those rules to mimic the will of man and not God. Is it even possible that God approves of a single abortion? Didn't he create that young life in the first place? And if this is the case, how can one belong to a religion that claims to be Christian but does not object to the horrendous slaughtering of God's children?

If you haven't read any of Scott Hahn's work, you might consider it. He is the leading Biblical scholar in the world, a former Presbyterian minister with a doctorate in divinity, and a convert to the Catholic Church. The harder he studied the Bible and history, the more he (reluctantly) realized that Luther had it wrong.

Nevertheless, I appreciate your point of view, and what a light in the darkness you are. God bless.

Mrs. June Fuentes said...

Dear Thunder,

Thank you for comment. I understand that I have many Catholic readers and I want to share with you a bit of history about me, I was born into and raised in a Catholic Church where I continued to stay until my conversion when I was about 22.

So I have personally looked deep into and studied the religious roots and teaching of the Catholic religion and can unapologetically say that there is much to be questioned. I encourage all others to do the same, to do an indepth study of Catholicism and compare it to the truth of the Scriptures.

'The Catholic Church is the only major Christian religion that denounces contraception, abortion, and fornication. I have never met a Protestant whose Church spoke out against these evils. Certainly, individuals like yourself do speak out, but not entire churches, and not the major influential ones. The Church does so, with authority, and without apology.'

I have to disagree with this statement. There are MANY churches defending life and the sanctity of marriage and to say the Catholic church is the only church defending it is completely false. I know of many churches defending life and yes, even the influential ones with over 10,000 members do as well. They have done much for this cause and also proclaim the truth at the same time.

'When humans get to make their own rules (I don't like the church founded by Christ, so I'll go start a new one over here that suits me better), it doesn't take long for those rules to mimic the will of man and not God.'

Your statement actually reminds me of the Catholic church, it's teaching and history. Please do an indepth study of the Scriptures and consider a few things: Where are the sacraments and the worship of Mary and saints to be found? There is much more to consider. There were things I had to look at and consider as a former Catholic. Where these true doctrines? Is the pope infallible? Are our sins forgiven by man or by God? Who is the true mediator between God and man? Scriptures declare it is Christ alone.

I have done a google search on Scott Hahn and suggest you do the same. There is much literature out there refuting his position and conversion from a Biblical point of view.

I must again state that I went through a time of agonizing (not wanting to depart with my Catholic faith or roots) to studying the Bible for myself and realizing so much of what I believe in the Catholic church was absent and actually taught against in the Bible. How could this be? How was I following after men's traditions after all these years and not knowing the truth for myself?

There are many other issues I could raise here but to keep this short I will end here. Again, prayerfully study and take a good look at Christian churches around you before you make any judgment.

Many blessings...

Rachel R. said...

Is Luther young-child-appropriate? (We have a 7yo and 2yo and I had totally forgotten about this movie, which I'm told the local video rental store should have. Obviously, we haven't seen it yet.)

One Christian Mom said...

I had never heard of a "reformation celebration" before this year, and you are the first to explain it to me, so thank you! It's too late for us to do this this year, as I am already slated to work at our "harvest festival" which seemed like a safe way to let the children celebrate, however we will be doing this next year!
PS - I was just catching up on my blog reading, and I wanted to say that your last couple of posts were amazing!

Rose said...


I liked your answer to Thunder on the Catholic church, and the reason's for your leaving. Ironically, those are the same reasons I left the Catholic church. I, too, was born and raised in the Catholic church, and my husband just converted over this past Easter, and is trying real hard to get me to go back and I won't do it. Unfortunatly, I do go to church with, because I do not have any way of going anywhere else ( we only have 1 car)!

Mrs. June Fuentes said...

Dear Rachel R.,

You will want to watch the movie first, some death scenes are not appropriate. If you have Clearplay that would solve the problem.

Many blessings...

JavaMama said...

We are watching Luther right now ;) one of our favorite movies. This year we caught on to late to really celebrate Reformation day but we have it in our future from here on out. This is a awesome post, thank you for sharing your thoughts and your links.

JOYfully in Him,

Anonymous said...

Such a lovely blog! Just wanted to let you know I've got my own blog ( and am posting some ideas for Reformation, and your blog came up. So you may get some added traffic this month, this year!

God's richest blessings as you carry on His work!

Deb in WV

Lori said...

I'm interested in the unit study but when I click on the link it says "Access Denied". Is there a different link?

Mrs. June Fuentes said...

Dear Lori,

The Homeschool Corner is being worked on right now so it is not available to the public. I can send you the unit study if you are interested in it! Just give me your email address!

Many blessings...

Sarah said...

I have come to the same realization on the Catholic church, being born and raised in a Catholic family, it was hard to pull myself away, but after a few years away from the church and finally reading the bible myself I have come to find that there are a lot of beliefs in the Catholic church that contradict God's word. Looking back at my upbringing in the church I can also see that their was never a focus on studying the bible, but more or less focused on the church's interpreatation, which I find very odd, and is part of the reason I had never actually read the bible until I was out on my own.

kellyhjacobs said...

how do I become "invited" to read links on your blog? I would love to check out your reformation day unit study as I am interested in beginning this new celebration in our family, however it says that I am not invited.....

Thanks for your help!

Mrs. June Fuentes said...

The blog is currently being redesigned and shut down temporarily. I could send it to you if you'd like--just contact me with your email address!

Many blessings...

Cyndi said...

Hello, Thanks for this wonderful post!!!

I too would like the Reformation Unit Study you mentioned. I am denied access also.
Would you send it to me?

Thanks again for sharing. I just recently was made aware of the significance of the Reformation and I would love to share this with my family.

I will look for a way to send my email address more privately.

God Bless!!!

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