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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Nov. 2, 1999)
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A new testament
Protestant Reformation ends after five centuries
Sing alleluia high upon the _ .
rooftops, and shout it from the spires of
It is finished.
The Protestant Reformation is over.
And after five centuries of war and
brow-beating and other theological
battle, it’s not a moment too soon.
Chi Sunday, Oct 31,1999 in
Augsburg, Germany, exactly 482 years
after Martin Luther nailed his 95
Theses to die door of Castle Church in
Wittenberg, Lutherans and Catholics
got together to solve die last riddle of
the Reformation, and together signed a
doctrine that says salvation is through
faith in God and die mysterious saving
power ofhis grace.
As a Lutheran; I could nary contain
myself at the news - a victory - not
only for Lutherans, but for the Catholic
Church as well. Nearly 500 years of
debate and struggle - ended, to the
higher glory of God.
It has been my passion for nearly
all of my life to come to grips with die
ynknowable mystery of God and his ~
love, only to come to die immutable
truth that I cannot, by any desire or
action of my own, comprehend in the
least what God has done in saving
And while some theological differ
ences exist - the squabbles over tran
substantiation can always be a point of
contention for us amateur theologians
- between the Lutheran Church and the
Catholic Church, the base problem is
solved. And that is all that matters.
I can’t say that I am anything but
overjoyed that this reconciliation has
come now, when so much of die world
has shrouded itself in the fundamental
ist dogmas of Protestantism or right
wing Christian militancy.
This latest act gives due tribute to
what Luther had tried so hard to
accomplish and define in his lifetime -
that he was not protesting anything, but
doing something altogether more radi
cal: attempting a reformation of die
And he finally got it The victory
be in Christ, as Luther would say.
Among other things, Luther saw
what a depraved beast man was, and
how fruitless it must seem that men
should think that we could be anything
more than wretched and try to save
ourselves by good works.
So he posited die doctrine of faith
alone and salvation through die overar
ching grace of God and tried to moti
vate his fellows in the monastery to
follow him. He had a few takers but
was eventually excommunicated by the
Still, Luther clung to die legitimacy
of the Catholic faith as die one true
church. Therefore, Lutherans are not
Protestants, only reformed Catholics.
But it doesn’t matter anymore, as
far as I’m concerned. We have recon
ciled and come to a'clearer version of
what it is that saves and who is doing
I don’t know what I’ll do first, now a
that it’s over. It seems akin to a cease
fire in a five century war, of which I
have only fought the last 20 years.
There is a memory of die battle, but
it’s so long ago and archaic that I can
hardly recognize it
I’ve said my prayers. I’ll continue
to say them, lauding and magnifying
the glorious work of God in this.
What we have now done here on
earth can only soothe our fears and
anxiety and give us hope about what
happens when we leave this place for
our true home, in heaven. And that
soothing comes in now recognizing,
both Catholic and Lutheran, that there
is nothing we can do here but accept
that we can do nothing and be saved by
an illimitable Love.
I can only imagine what happened
yesterday in Augsburg at the service
held jointly by fee Baroque Roman
Catholic Cathedral and fee Lutheran
Church of St Anna’s. There were 3,000
people gathered to witness the most'
historic event in fee last half of the
And, wonder of wonders, there you
had it for all fee world to see, Catholics
and Lutherans in open embrace, free
from fee bondage of the Reformation
and its memories of bloodshed, suffer
ing and endless argument.
Pope John Paul II, from fee
Vatican, fee seat of Luther’s scorn,
praised the reunion and was echoed by
his Lutheran colleagues, including
Bishop Christian Krause of fee
Lutheran World Federation.
It was as if fee Christian world
had awoken from hibernation to come
to grips wife fee fact that God
loves everyone, and we all -3CSS
believe in that same God, and that he is
most decidedly neither Lutheran
nor Catholic, but something else, >
something changeless and free
Finally, wife fee reconcilia
non oi doctrine, L-nnsuamty can v
move on and shift the focus
away from the manmade pitfalls
of dogma and concentrate on
the true meaning of it all, the
undeserved yet abundant
love of God.
So what will we have
to argue about anymore?
The consecrated Eucharist
and other communion
Catholics and Lutherans are
brothers and sisters in doc
trine once again, just where
God would have us.
And now, with one
fewer thing impeding
the Christian brother
hood, maybe Lutheran
boys can come home
with Catholic girls and
vice versa. And we can
recognize that it has
been the same God, the
same Jesus, the same
Holy Spirit throughout, regardless of
what is on a piece of paper.
Entire new portals have been
opened, from the most trivial to the
most potentially catastrophic, remem
bering the Christian religious wars in
Europe and the unspeakable, whole
sale slaughter of Christians by
It would appear that 482 years of
bickering may have been enough. I’m
sure God thought so.
Adam J. Klinker is a junior English and history major and a Daily Nebraskan columnist.
‘Kids in the Hall/ similar shows hold key to precious, original comedy
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I love Halloween. It’s die only day
of die year when you can become any
thing, or anyone, that you want to.
This is why I wasn’t surprised
when only one person out of 73.5
knew who I was.
I will reveal who I was, and then, I
will let you know where my passion
for becoming this man sprung from.
(It probably sprung from Uranus, but
I’m not really sure.)
I was Blueberry Johnson.
Don’t tell me you don’t know who -
he is. Hels the rejected children’s show
host that “looks like a trickin' blueber
Blueberry is a highly acclaimed
producer; not educated with the acting
skills to be a host, but because of the
fact that he’s a “freak of nature” and
was bom with blue hair, he thinks he
should host the show he brainstormed,
aptly titled “Blueberry Muffins in die
Blueberry even talks in a high
pitched voice like a puppet and is con
vinced he was put on the earth for this
Needless to say, the executives in
charge didn’t heed a word of
Blueberry’s, simply because he had
never taken an acting class.
Instead they hired Richard
Dreyfuss - “a great choice,” the execu
tives say. And a much funnier one, too.
If you have no idea what I’m talk
ing about, Blueberry Johnson was a
skit character done by a comedy
troupe called The State.
After watching people watching
me and not knowing who I was (I even
wore a name tag that clearly stated
“Hello! My name is Blueberry”), I
started wondering if sketch comedy
was a dying breed.
Where has sketch comedy gone?
What have they done with it? (They, of
course, meaning the aliens and the
secretary of defense.)
The answer is that sketch comedy
hasn’t gone anywhere. It has simply
always been a sort of “lost art,” or per
haps a “floating art”
It’s not entirely “lost,” because mil
lions of people watch these obscure
shows, but these people are few and
I say “floating art” because sketch
comedy troupes come and go on the
TV screen (if they are lucky enough to
be picked up by various stations at var
ious points in tone), but usually they
have been together for at least five
years, trying to get their big break.
Lome Michaels, producer of
“Saturday Night Live,” gave a troupe
called Kids in the Hall its first big
break after it had been trying to get on
the air for several years.
“KITH” ran on HBO from 1989 to
1994. It is now syndicated on Comedy
Central at 1 p.m., and I would highly
recommend that you arrange your
class schedule around it.
'I just quit going to college alto
gether, and I am going to be a groupie
for the Kids’ coming reunion tour.
Around the time this Canadian
class act was ending, “The State” (the
birthplace ofBlueberry) was rearing
its ugly head.
“The State” is definitely my
favorite show, but several others have
helped shape me into who I am today.
... Socially messed up and termi
nally ill (brained), I find time to watch
as many of these remaining or syndi
cated stows as possible.
“The State” aired from 1993 to
early 1996 after the cast decided to
leave MTV and try to get picked up by
Fox. The pilot was a bust, and all 11 of
the troupe are woiking on various pro
wrote a play titled “Sex. aJc.a. Weiners
They’ve come a king way since
their somewhat juvenile sketch titled
“Booger, Booger and Fartybutt”
There will always be upcoming
comedy troupes, and the newest one
that is thoroughly engaging is
“Upright Citizens Brigade” on
Its stirring rendition of “Spaghetti
Jesus” (a simple tale of one man who
saw the face of Jesus arranged in noo
dles on his plate - which gradually
descends, or is it ascends, to Vomit
Jesus and Fecal Jesus) had me in
stitches for hours and hours to come.
After I told everyone I know of the
sketch plot, they put me in more stitch
es for wasting their precious time. The
wounds have yet to heal.
Well, folks, no time is too precious
for “Spaghetti Jesus” or sketch come
dy in general for that matter.
I would just encourage you all to
respect die sketch comedy, because,
no matter how bad it is, it’s original,
and feat makes it so much more worth
while than the usual formulaic TV
shows and movies that we are used to.
With sketch comedy, you know
who is writing die material because
the writers are right in front of your
face. They don’t have hundreds of
writers there to tell them what lines to
They don’t have to follow any
rules except one - anything can hap
pen as long as it^s tunny and inexpen
sive to produce.
“Saturday Night Live” is the
longest running sketch act, but it is dif
ferent because the actors come and go
seasonally, and that’s how it has always
been. They can be replaced on a whim
and most often are.
Shows like “Mr. Show,” “The
Jenny McCarthy Show,” “The Tracy
Ullman Show,” “Mad TV” and of
course “The State” and “KITH,” all
started together and burned out togeth
er. The decisions they made, they
made together, and if their station did
n’t like it, they got dropped like an
empty shampoo bottle.
I think Jenny McCarthy was
doomed from the start after her damp
character on MTV’s “Singled Out.”
She then hosted ESPN’s “Maui Sport
Challenge” and finally landed 20
shows with MTV
I thought she was hilarious.
Lately I’ve beenjonesing for
Jenny, but there’s no way to get reruns
unless 50,000 people write MTV and
plead mercilessly. It’s the same deal
with “The State.” It doesn’t own any
rights to its material, so the fans are
out of luck.
I guess the joke of sketch comedy
isn’t for everyone, and neither was my
costume. So if you went to a
Halloween party as Doug, Barry and
Levonne, Cabbage Head, or the “It’s a
Fact” girl, then we can jive about
whether or not you really can get
Wood from a stone.
P.S. You can. You just have to throw
the stone hard enough.
Karen Brown is a junior English andfilm studies major and a Daily Nebraskan columnist
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