Gottfried Locher and Tim Guldimann join advisory board of Reformation Jubilee in Germany

At its 2014 conference, held October 13 in Wittenberg, the advisory board, as the highest committee in charge of preparing the German Reformation Jubilee, welcomed its first two non-German members: Gottfried Locher, Council President of the Federation of Swiss Protestant Churches, and Tim Guldimann, Swiss Ambassador in Berlin. This act illustrates the importance of the Reformation in Switzerland in the context of the 2017 Reformation Jubilee and further strengthens the ties of cooperation between the Protestant Churches in Switzerland and Germany.
Photo: Jens Schlüter

Bildlegende: von links nach rechts, vor dem Cranach-Altar in der Kirche Wittenberg : Ministerpräsident Dr. Reiner Haseloff, Sachsen-Anhalt; Niklaus Schneider, Ratspräsident der Evangelischen Kirche in Deutschland EKD; Landesbischöfin Ilse Junkermann, Evangelische Kirche in Mitteldeutschland EKM; Tim Guldimann, Schweizer Botschafter in Berlin; Gottfried Locher, Ratspräsident des Schweizerischen Evangelischen Kirchenbundes

950 days before the opening of the “Reformation World Exhibition” on May 20, 2017, the advisory board unveiled a globe sculpture. It serves as a countdown to the exhibition opening, in which Switzerland will also participate. Signing the Leuenberg Agreement in 1973 “has brought the Luther-influenced German church and the Swiss church inspired by Calvin and Zwingli closer together,” states Gottfried Locher, who is pleased that the theological and cultural significance of Protestant Switzerland is recognized in Germany as well. “The celebrations to commemorate the Reformation shall pave the way toward joint projects on a European scale and across denominational boundaries.”

The Council of the Federation of Swiss Protestant Churches aims to make the Swiss Federal Council aware of the importance of the Reformation – as a national event of global historical significance. “The Reformation Jubilee is an excellent and unique opportunity that should have its place in the federation’s cultural policy from 2016 to 2019,” says Gottfried Locher. “The Swiss Reformation is an export product with immense resonance. Today, the Reformed Churches have more than 80 million members all over the world. Counting the churches that developed from them at a later time, particularly the free churches and Pentecostal churches, that makes 300 million people altogether.”