2019 St. Mark’s Conference: “Fathers of the Church”

Announcing
The 2019 St. Mark’s Conference:
“Fathers of the Church”

Fathers of the Church is the title an article which in 1954 Hermann Sasse (1895-1976) contributed to a festschrift in honor of the 70th birthday of Heinrich Martin, Church Superintendent in the Hessian Lutheran Church, one of the confessional Lutheran churches that in 1972 joined together in forming the Missouri Synod’s German sister church, the Independent Evangelical Lutheran Church. An English translation of Sasse’s article can be found in The Lonely Way: Selected Essays and Letters by Hermann Sasse, Vol.2, pp. 223-236. Here Sasse teaches us that “It is always a sign of deep spiritual sickness when a church forgets its fathers.” Sasse’s article is a splendid introduction to this year’s Conference in which we will hear about three 19th century fathers of the Church (pictured left to right in the featured image above):

  • August F. C. Vilmar (1800-1868)
  • Theodor F. D. Kliefoth (1810-1895)
  • Friedrich J. C. Lochner (1822-1902)

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Monday, April 29 – Saint Mark’s Day (transferred*)

*Ancient tradition permits the celebration of no holy day during Easter week. Holy Days occurring during that week are transferred to the first open day of the week of Quasimodogeniti.

11:00 AM – Divine Service

12:30 PM – Lunch

1:00 PM – “August Vilmar and Theology for Today” (The Rev. Dr. James Ambrose Lee II, Concordia University, River Forest, Illinois)

2:00 PM – “Theodor Kliefoth and the State of Private Confession in the 19th Century” (The Rev. Dr. Lee)

3:00 PM – Solemn Vespers

4:00 PM – Gemütlichkeit

Tuesday, April 30

9:00 AM – Matins

9:45 AM – “Reclaiming the Household: Household Traditions and the Christian Year” (The Rev. Dr. Douglas H. Spittel, Pastor of First Trinity Lutheran Church, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania)

11:00 AM – Divine Service

12:30 PM – Lunch

1:00 PM – “Friedrich Lochner: Life and Work” (The Rev. Charles L. McClean, Pastor of Our Saviour Lutheran Church, Baltimore, Maryland)

2:00 PM – Panel Discussion

3:00 PM – Itinerarium: Prayer for Travelers

The Rev. Luke T. Zimmerman
Pastor of Calvary Lutheran Church
Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania
Preacher at Divine Service

The Rev. Roy Axel Coats
Pastor of Redeemer Lutheran Church
Baltimore, Maryland
Preacher at Vespers

The Rev. Brian Westgate
Pastor of Redeemer Church
Oakmont, Pennsylvania
Conference Organist


The Saint Mark’s Conference concerns the confessional, sacramental, and liturgical life of the Church of the Augsburg Confession. It is hosted annually by Our Saviour Lutheran Church, Baltimore, Maryland and her pastor, the Rev. Charles McClean. Pastor McClean is a graduate of Concordia Seminary, Saint Louis. His Master of Sacred Theology thesis, Theological Issues at the Colloquy of Montbeliard 1586, was prepared under the supervision of the Rev. Dr. Arthur Carl Piepkorn. Pastor McClean is editor of The Conduct of the Services.

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