How it all Started: The 95 Theses
The 95 Theses which were posted on the door of All Saint's Church in Wittenberg, Saxony on October 31, 1517 were Martin Luther's statement to the Catholic Church which basically started the Reformation. In his 95 Theses, Luther makes statements about the practices of the Catholic Church, including baptism, absolution, and indulgences. The indulgences were a large item that Martin concentrated on in his Theses; he thought that it was wrong and simply a money-maker for the Catholic Church. He also had a problem with the relics of the Church which people had to pay for to see and touch. Luther thought that if it was necessary for the people to see these relics then they should not be charged for it. Due to growing up as a peasant, Martin always felt a strong connection to the poor and he stood up for them strongly throughout the Reformation. It is also extremely important to remember that Luther did not want to break off from the Catholic Church; he simply wanted to reform it. He saw problems in the Church that needed to be changed, but he was not planning on starting his own denomination due to his beliefs. Luther said in his 95 Theses that he was publishing them out of love and truth, but he also says that he understands that doing it will mean that there will be people who will want to debate with him. Martin Luther's stand with the 95 Theses had an extremely negative effect initially and Luther was asked to withdraw his works but refused. Luther debated with the pope and many different committees about his statements but they would not agree to reform. Due to this, Martin unintentionally began a new denomination, which was named Lutheranism after Martin Luther himself. He did not want the church body named after him, but instead, preferred the name The Evangelical Church. It wasn't long before more denominations were formed due to a particular point of scripture dissension. All of this is due to Martin posting his ninety-five Theses on one night.