Friday, June 09, 2006

#1917-Elector Johann to Luther,Jonas, Melanchton, and Pauli in Wittenberg

(This is likely the last letter of Johann to ML as the Elector dies August 16,1532 in Schweinitz. The Editors,following Burkhardt put this at the beginning of August 1532.)
Johann, by God's grace. To begin with, our greetings. Honorable, celebrated,dear devoted,Counselors and Faithful ones! We want you to know your understanding that we for a time are receiving from the pastors in our lands and princedom complaints about the difficulties they are experiencing and their daily requests about their needs and shortages they are suffering namely that a portion are despised,injured,struck and imprisoned and a portion does not receive sufficient of their proposed support; and another portion hardly any provision and their parish and other properties stolen or taken away without any specific reason or permission and yet more. Contrary to this is whether the pastors are to be rebuked for their teaching and life as several are publicly blamed and discovered that many times they are seeking a pay increase and more income. And though we at all times have and ordered and continue to do so that anyone who is sulky and shames them or unjustly assaults them or otherwise troubles them should receive fitting punishment so that they five the pastors their necessary provisions and take away nothing of their pastoral goods or steal from them and should this occur that they again take them in and permit them to return and they are not without certain reasons and knowledge to be dismissed and to be dealt with at every opportunity with fitting disposition but yet we find it is little regarded and they do want to live in this way.So that does not lead to be alienated and so that our conscience is not burdened and upon the determination of the general committee
of our country's submitted request we graciously assent to the ordering again of the visitation and we were inclined to do so without that; so that there would not be further complaints by the pastors about our willingnesss and they will be turned from this we have no doubt and that with God's help along the right and order further offense, as much as possible, will be avoided and there will not be brought by the opponents of the holy Gospel any more despisiing as previously occured and thus it is
our gracous desire that you will give us your thoughts thereto as to when, at what time and through whom, according to your calculation, should be ordered and undertaken in each are of our land and to indicate and report about if you have doubt
about our previous instruction and whether in one or more articles you think there should be changes and what part should be increased or decreased and especially also
to ponder how and what form the union and putting together of several parishes should take whether that should happen and to make the necessary distinctions to be known; this we want to know and it be done to all our good understanding. Dated at Torgau.
Addition: We also graciously desire that in all this and in the composing of your thoughts that you would confer further with our celebrated Counselor and dear faithful one,Gregory Brueck, Doctor. Dated etc.
Nota: Ascribed to D. Brueck.
NOTES: This is a rather free translation due to the complexity of the language of the Saxon court but hope it gives the sense.

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