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Bugenhagen, Johann

(Pomeranus; Dr. Pommer; June 24, 1485–April 20, 1558). B. Wolin, Pomerania; educ. U. of Greifswald; at 18 appointed rector of Latin school Treptow on the Rega; ordained priest 1509; appointed lecturer on Bible and church fathers 1517. Became follower of Luther 1520 after reading Babylonian Captivity (see Luther, Chief Writings of, 4). Married 1522. Pastor Wittenberg 1523–58; Luther's confessor. Lectured on Psalms at Wittenberg. Helped pub. Low Ger. ed. NT 1524. Officiated at Luther's wedding (see Luther, Family Life of). First Wittenberger to oppose Zwingli* 1525. Great organizer of Luth. Ch. In 1526 reformed Hamburg, Brunswick 1528, Lübeck and Lower Saxony 1530. His ch. order was introd. also in Minden, Osnabrück, Göttingen, Soest, Bremen, and many other places. Called to Pomerania 1534; succeeded in introd. Reformation against much opposition. Christian III* called him to Denmark (see Denmark, Lutheranism in, 3) 1537; reformed the ch. and U. of Copenhagen; crowned the king and queen; called back 1542 to reform Schleswig-Holstein; busy also in Brunswick and Hildesheim. After declining 3 bishoprics and all other calls he was made gen. supt. of Saxony 1539. Preached funeral sermon for Luther. After Imperials captured Wittenberg, Charles V treated him with surprising mildness. Bugenhagen, in turn, did not oppose the Augsburg Interim.* He helped draft Leipzig Interim. But 1550 he returned to strict Lutheranism with Commentary on Jonah, in which he protested against RC error. Shortly before his retirement 1557 he warned all pastors against compromises. One of greatest scholars of Reformation era. Praised by Luther for 1524 commentary on whole Psalter (WA, 15, 8). Helped Luther rev. Bible 1539; stood at his side in Antinomian Controversy* 1539–40. In controversies after Luther's death he suffered much Anfechtung (spiritual anxiety) besides grievous physical pain toward the end of life. Greatest contribution to Reformation was his indefatigable zeal and his ability to organize Luth. churches and schools; he is called the father of the Volksschule. Works include Pomerania; Von dem Christenloven und rechten guden Werken; letter to Christians in England. See also Christian Education, D 5; Lutheran Confessions, B 1; Pack, Otto von. WGT

Quellen und Darstallungen aus der Geschichte des Reformations jahrhunderts, ed. G. Berbig, VI Bugenhagiana. Quellen zur Lebensgeschichte des D. Joh. Bugenhagen, 1: Bibliotheca Bugenhagiana. Bibliographie der Druckschriften des D. Joh.; Bugenhagen, ed. G. Geisenhof (Leipzig, 1908); H. Hering, Doktor Pomeranus, Johannes Bugenhagen (Halle, 1888); W. M. Ruccius, John Bugenhagen Pomeranus (Philadelphia, 1924); W. Tillmanns, The World and Men Around Luther (Minneapolis, 1959), pp. 90–93; K. A. T. Vogt, Johannes Bugenhagen Pomeranus, in Leben und ausgewählte Schriften der Väter und Begründer der lutherischen Kirche, ed. J. Hartmann et al., IV, in vol. 2 (Elberfeld, 1867).

Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
©Concordia Publishing House, 2000, All rights Reserved. Reproduced with Permission

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