The highlight of today for me was a pilgrimage to the burial place of Erasmus – about 20 miles from where we are staying – he’s buried in Basel, Switzerland inside Münster Cathedral. Lest you think I search out these places merely for historical interest I’ll just say I believe them to be as key portals and important places to pray for God to release these ancient breakthrough anointings on a new generation. The mantles on them are up for grabs today.
You can read Kaitlyn’s version of our long and tiring walk around Basel here. She has some great pictures of the church which is right on the Rhein River – great views. I’ll drop in an old sketch of what it looked like back in the day. (Actually things don’t look much different today – modern boats maybe is the most notable difference- comparing Kaitlyn’s pictures which were taken from the church makes this old sketch come alive for us. I put a yellow star at the base of the church on the spot where Kaitlyn was shooting pictures from.)
Basel is a key Reformation city – geographically it’s where three countries meet – France, Germany and Switzerland. I’ll also drop in a pic of Caleb and I at the pillar/tombstone in the church that sits over Erasmus’ crypt.
Desiderius Erasmus was spiritual father of sorts to both Zwingli and Luther. Someone once commented to him that he laid the egg that Luther hatched. Erasmus agreed it was probably true but commented that he thought a different bird would come forth. Makes me think about raising up the next generation and letting them go further in God than we were able to go, but that we must pass off a baton to them to run further with not pass them a box they have to fit into.
Interesting that Erasmus never really joined the Reformation but was the main forerunner of it. He lived through the Reformation period and consistently criticized clerical abuses in the church but thought it could be reformed from within. His translation work of the New Testament was foundational to open up the Word of God again for the people paving the way for Luther to give the German people a translation in their own language. Erasmus’ critique of a corrupt church served as seeds that germinated in guys like Zwingli and Luther. And, Reformation was the fruit that came forth. But Erasmus decidedly stayed with the old wineskin. He was like John the Baptist in that he was an anointed leader of the old wineskin who never went with the new. He let the ones who came after him increase and he decreased.
There are probably a hundred bishops and theologians buried in this one thousand year old church and, with all the tombstones being in Latin, it took me a while to find Erasmus. I asked a lady in the church if it indeed was his grave and she said, “Yes, he’s the only “Catholic” buried in this church.” I thought that was an interesting 500 year old jab.
Kristen put up a post this morning on how quiet it is here. I have some stuff brewing in me on the church bells that ring everywhere all day long. I’ll save those thoughts for later.