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Worms and it’s Diet

Today we are headed to Worms, a city southwest of Frankfurt with a population of about 80,000. Worms is one of the oldest cities in northern Europe reaching back to the fifth century but is best known for the 1521 Diet of Worms.

Monument to the Reformers in Worms

On April 16, 1521, Martin Luther arrived in Worms. Now he just didn’t appear, he was commanded to appear before the Diet at 4 p.m. the following day. It seems that Luther was continuing to upset the powers that be in the church/state and he was commanded to appear to recant all his writings. Dr Jeromee Schurff, Wittenberg professor in Canon Law, was to act as Luther's lawyer before the Diet.

Paul stands in "Luther's shoes"

On 17 April, the imperial marshal, Ulrich von Pappenheim, and the herald, Caspar Sturm, came for Luther. Pappenheim reminded Luther that he should speak only in answer to direct questions from the presiding officer, Johann Eck. Eck asked if a collection of books was Luther's and if he was ready to revoke their heresies. Dr Schurff said, "Please have the titles read." There were 25 of them, probably including The 95 Theses, Resolutions Concerning the 95 Theses, On the Papacy at Rome, Address to the Christian Nobility, The Babylonian Captivity of the Church, and On the Freedom of a Christian, you get the idea. There were lots of writings and lots to recant! Luther requested more time for a proper answer, so he was given until the next day at 4 p.m.