Reformation Celebrations

For twenty years our church has had a Reformation Celebration around October 31. Early in this practice, I was adamantly opposed to any kind of “Harvest Festival” or participation in Halloween. While we still do not allow our children to go out “trick-or-treating,” I have come to see the issue differently over the years. Tim Challies’s ambivalence and ruminations on the subject last year pretty reflect my own.

Nevertheless, we are continuing our tradition at Grace Baptist Church this year and on October 27 will host a chili supper (a tipping of the hat to my Texas roots!) and movie for the adults and a Reformation Fair for the children (put on by our youth and young adults). The kids will be introduced to key leaders of the Protest Reformation with medeival games, skits, etc while the adults will watch “The Radicals,” a film on evangelical anabaptists (highlighting the life of Michael Sattler). We have watched a variety of movies over the years that have highlighted some aspect of our Christian heritage. It has been a lighthearted way to promote appreciation for the work of God’s grace in previous generations.

Other churches host reformation conferences, like the one at Audobon Drive Bible Church with Joel Beeke and Geoff Thomas. First Baptist Church of St. Francis, Kansas will also host a Reformation weekend, October 27-29 with Roy Hargrave preaching on “God’s Sovereignty and Man’s Responsibility.”

I am sure there are other conferences related to Reformation Day coming up in the next two weeks. Feel free to let us know about them in the comments section.

Tom Ascol has served as a Pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Cape Coral, FL since 1986. Prior to moving to Florida he served as pastor and associate pastor of churches in Texas. He has a BS degree in sociology from Texas A&M University (1979) and has also earned the MDiv and PhD degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth, Texas. He has served as an adjunct professor of theology for various colleges and seminaries, including Reformed Theological Seminary, the Covenant Baptist Theological Seminary, African Christian University, Copperbelt Ministerial College, and Reformed Baptist Seminary. He has also served as Visiting Professor at the Nicole Institute for Baptist Studies at Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, Florida. Tom serves as the President of Founders Ministries and The Institute of Public Theology. He has edited the Founders Journal, a quarterly theological publication of Founders Ministries, and has written hundreds of articles for various journals and magazines. He has been a regular contributor to TableTalk, the monthly magazine of Ligonier Ministries. He has also edited and contributed to several books, including Dear Timothy: Letters on Pastoral Ministry, The Truth and Grace Memory Books for children and  Recovering the Gospel and Reformation of Churches. He is also the author of From the Protestant Reformation to the Southern Baptist ConventionTraditional Theology and the SBC and Strong and Courageous. Tom regularly preaches and lectures at various conferences throughout the United States and other countries. In addition he regularly contributes articles to the Founders website and hosts a weekly podcast called The Sword & The Trowel. He and his wife Donna have six children along with four sons-in-law and a daughter-in-law. They have sixteen grandchildren.
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