The Christian Post ran an article about Lutherans seeking forgiveness for the persecution of Anabaptists and for the ways in which Lutheran reformers supported persecutions with theological arguments. On another note, I just finished a documentary about Jan Hus. After an eight year investigation, the Catholic Church decided it was wrong to have executed Jan Hus. Pope John Paul II apologized in 1999. There are sins of the past: Luther, Zwingli, and Calvin supported Anabaptist execution (sword, drowning, or sword). Thousands of Christians were killed under their doctrine. The crime could be as minor as simply rejecting infant baptism. To us, this is horrific. Jan Hus strongly opposed the Catholic sale of indulgences and denied the inerrancy of the Pope. He believed in preaching in the vernacular. He is considered by many as the first Reformer (I’m torn between him and Wycliffe). He was burned at the stake in 1415. Slavery: The General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church declared slavery against the law of God, but also opposed its abolition and deposed a minister for preaching abolition (in 1861 the Southern presbyteries withdrew and founded their own denomination). By 1843 over a thousand Methodist ministers owned slaves. When the Baptist missionary agency refused to commission a candidate recommended by the Georgia Baptist Convention, on the grounds that he owned slaves, the SBC was born. In 1995 the SBC apologized for their role in slavery and “for condoning and/or perpetuating individual and systemic racism” in their lifetime. I suppose Methodists and Presbyterians have also. Now, I do understand the SBC’s need to make a statement acknowledging the evils of racism and taking responsibility for the ideologies that contributed to the formation of the convention. I understand the need for Lutherans to bridge the gap with their Mennonite neighbors. I think it important to acknowledge the failures of our past and address those offenses - particularly when there remains something of a residual effect from those failures. To what extent do you believe that we are accountable for the sins of our fathers and do you feel these apologies are useful tools towards reconciliation?