History of The Moravian Church

By dhallBr
  • Period: 1369 to Jul 6, 1415

    Jan Hus

    "The foremost of Czech reformers, John [sic] Hus (1369-1415) was a professor of philosophy and rector of the University in Prague. The Bethlehem Chapel in Prague, where Hus preached, became a rallying place for the Czech reformation. Gaining support from students and the common people, he led a protest movement against many practices of the Roman Catholic clergy and hierarchy." From The Moravian Church
  • 1391

    Bethlehem Chapel in Prague Founded

    Jan Milíč, inspired by the writings of John Wycliffe, formed a national movement to reform the Roman Catholic Church. His pupils founded the Bethlehem Chapel, where sermons were performed in Czech, the language of the people, rather than Latin. From Encyclopaedia Brittanica
  • 1402

    Hus Leads Bethlehem Chapel

    "From 1402 Hus was in charge of the chapel, which had become the centre of the growing national reform movement in Bohemia. He became increasingly absorbed in public preaching and eventually emerged as the popular leader of the movement." From Encyclopaedia Brittanica
  • 1409

    Hus elected rector of University of Prague

  • 1412

    Hus heresy trial

    "Hus publicly denounced [the sale of] indulgences [by antipope John XXIII] before the university and, by so doing, lost the support of [King] Wenceslas." From Encyclopaedia Brittanica
  • 1412

    Hus hides and writes in Bohemia

    "[Hus] found refuge mostly in southern Bohemia in the castles of his friends, and during the next two years he engaged in feverish literary activity. His enemies...wrote a large number of polemical treatises against him, which he answered in an equally vigorous manner.. He... wrote a large number of treatises in Czech and a collection of sermons." From Encyclopaedia Brittanica
  • 1414

    Hus invited to Constance and imprisoned

    "With the Western Schism continuing unabated, King Sigismund of Hungary...forced John XXIII to call the Council of Constance to find a final solution of the schism and to put an end to all the heresies. Sigismund... sent an emissary to invite Hus to attend the council to explain his views...Shortly after arriving...he was...arrested and placed in close confinement, from which he never emerged." From Encyclopaedia Brittanica
  • Jul 6, 1415

    Hus Burned at the Stake

    Hus Burned at the Stake
    "The [Council of Constance] urged Hus to recant in order to save his life, but to the majority of its members he was a dangerous heretic fit only for death. When he refused to recant, he was solemnly sentenced on July 6, 1415, and burned at the stake." From Encyclopaedia Brittanica To this day, Moravian churches have special services celebrating Jan Hus' life.
  • 1457

    Unitas Fratrum Organized

    Unitas Fratrum Organized
    "The Moravian Church, or Unitas Fratrum (Unity of Brethren), as it has been officially known since 1457, arose as followers of Hus gathered in the village of Kunvald, about 100 miles east of Prague, in eastern Bohemia, and organized the church." From The Moravian Church, Jan Blahoslav
  • Period: 1457 to

    Unitas Fratrum

    "According to Gregory the Patriarch, considered the founder of Unitas Fratrum, what made a Christian was not doctrine or what he or she believed, but that a person lived his or her life according to the teachings of Jesus Christ." From The Moravian Church
  • Oct 31, 1517

    Martin Luther 95 Theses

    "Ninety-five Theses, propositions for debate concerned with the question of indulgences, written (in Latin) and possibly posted by Martin Luther on the door of the Schlosskirche (Castle Church), Wittenberg, on October 31, 1517. This event came to be considered the beginning of the Protestant Reformation." From Encyclopaedia Brittanica
  • Unitas Fratrum Suppressed

    "In the troubles of the reaction against the Reformation, times of persecution alternated with times of comparative calm, until at last in 1620 the Roman Church was placed in power by foreign armies, and the Unitas Fratrum with other Protestant bodies was utterly suppressed." From Unitas Fratrum
  • Count von Zinzendorf revives Moravian Church

    Count von Zinzendorf revives Moravian Church
    "Between 1722 and 1727, some families from Moravia, who had kept the traditions of the old Unitas Fratrum, found a place of refuge in. Saxony, on the estate of Nicolaus Ludwig, Count Zinzendorf, and built a village which they called Herrnhut. Other people of widely differing views also found there a place of religious freedom, but their differences threatened to make it a place of strife." From Unitas Fratrum
  • Period: to

    Modern Moravian Church

    "Today there are more than one million members of the Moravian Church in the world. Most of them live in eastern Africa. Other major Moravian centers are the Caribbean basin, South Africa, Winston-Salem, and Bethlehem, Pa. There are now 24 provinces of the Unity." From The Moravian Church
  • Statutes of Herrnhut written

    "By his example and pastoral care Zinzendorf quickened [the Moravians'] Christian fellowship and united them for communal life under the Statutes of Herrnhut (May 12, 1727), which were found to follow the pattern of the old Unitas Fratrum." From Unitas Fratrum
  • First Moravian Missionaries sent to West Indies

  • Moravians first arrive in America and impact John Wesley

    "In 1735 [the Moravians] were part of General Oglethorpe’s philanthropic venture in Georgia. Their attempt to establish a community in Savannah did not succeed, but they did have a profound impact on the young John Wesley who had gone to Georgia during a personal spiritual crisis." From The Moravian Church
  • First Settlements in Pennsylvania

    First Settlements in Pennsylvania
    "After the failure of the Georgia mission, the Moravians were able to establish a permanent presence in Pennsylvania... Moravian settlers purchased 500 acres to establish the settlement of Bethlehem in 1741. Soon they bought 5,000 acres and [established the community of Nazareth]." From The Moravian Church, Central Moravian Church
  • Lititz Moravian Church founded

    Lititz Moravian Church founded
    "The Lititz Moravian Congregation was organized on February 19, 1749. It was then known as the 'Warwick Country Congregation' and included local farmers 'awakened' by the preaching of itinerant Moravian ministers. The Moravian motto 'In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, freedom; and in all things, love' was appealing to these early settlers in Lancaster County." From Lititz Moravian Congregation
  • First Moravian Church in North Carolina

    First Moravian Church in North Carolina
    "Bethabara, Bethania and Salem (now Winston-Salem) were the first Moravian settlements in North Carolina." From The Moravian Church and Home Moravian Church
  • Northern and Southern Provinces formed

    "In 1857 the two American provinces, North and South, became largely independent and set about expansion. Bethlehem in Pennsylvania and Winston-Salem in North Carolina became the headquarters of the two provinces (North and South)." From The Moravian Church
  • Worldwide Provinces formed

    "In 1957 the worldwide Moravian Church was reorganized into more than a dozen semi-autonomous provinces that remain part of a single global church. A Unity Synod is held every seven years to decide matters that affect the whole Moravian Church." From The Moravian Church