I’m back home again after having spent the past 10 days in Germany. The picture of the men in lederhosen that I posted last week wasn’t really fair, for modern Germany is nothing like that dorky picture. Over the next days I’ll be telling you about some of what I found interesting there, but let me begin by saying this: Germany is sophisticated, fascinating, and only a little bit dorky (honestly, I did see men wearing lederhosen, a costume that cannot be worn with much dignity, though men do look cute in them).
I traveled to Germany for a meeting of the Society of American Travel Writers, which included networking and professional development. I also went because I was intrigued by one of the tours offered, In the Footsteps of Martin Luther. In the history of religion, Luther is a Very Big Deal. And in my own life, his writings and life have shaped much of who I am today, since I was baptized a Lutheran, grew up a Lutheran, attended a Lutheran college, and am descended from many generations of Lutherans. And while I am no longer a Lutheran today (instead a close cousin, an Episcopalian), I have an affection for the religious tradition of my birth (as well as a bit of ambivalence about it).
Besides, taking a Luther tour is a good thing to do right now because the 500th anniversary of Luther’s nailing of the 95 Theses to the Church Door is coming up in 2017. If you’re a writer specializing in spiritual travel, such anniversaries make for good professional opportunities.
So I went to Germany as a Fallen Lutheran, ready to spend four days following in the footsteps of the famous, if a bit grumpy, Father of the Reformation. What happened? Tune in tomorrow (and in the days to come) to find out.