A Symphony for the Reformation - Mendelssohn’s Fifth

The Augsburg Confession of 1530 defined the theological beliefs of Martin Luther, becoming one of the most important documents of the Protestant Reformation. And 300 years later, on the anniversary of that historic document, Felix Mendelssohn celebrated this Reformation milestone in what became known as “Mendelssohn’s “Fifth Symphony," a symphony inspired by Martin Luther’s famed Reformation hymn, “A Mighty Fortress is Our God.”

The powerful symphonic presentation, including a finale with the entire orchestra, underscores the unmistakable “Mighty” of Luther’s hymn! Mendelssohn’s Fifth Symphony wasn’t published until 1868, years after his death. Although the symphony is not played often today, it shows the enduring legacy of Martin Luther’s iconic hymn based on Psalm 46: “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble!”

To learn more about the Protestant Reformation, visit museumofthebible.org/reformation.

Share

More Book Minute Features

October 14, 2019

Eisenhower's Inaugural Verses

President Dwight Eisenhower was born on this day in 1890. Shortly before his first inauguration in 1953, the president-elect asked Billy Graham to sug...
October 07, 2019

Fanny Crosby: Prolific Blind Hymn Writer

Fanny Crosby, though blind from a very young age, became a prolific hymn writer. Fanny Crosby was 15 when she was enrolled at the newly founded New Y...
September 30, 2019

Lincoln and the Gettysburg Address

The Battle of Gettysburg in July, 1863, was an attack by Confederate troops on the North — on their own soil! General Lee’s plan was to win, thereby d...