Day 1: Flight
Take an overnight flight from the US to Europe.
Day 2: Arrival in Frankfurt, Worms, Mainz
Arrive in Frankfurt this morning by and begin sightseeing in Worms. It was here, during the Imperial Diet in 1521, that Martin Luther challenged the entire Roman Catholic establishment by his refusal to recant the great doctrines of Protestantism. It was also here that William Tyndale completed the printing of his English version of the New Testament in 1525 which he had begun in Cologne. After seeing St. Peter's Church and the symbolic Luther Memorial near the town square. The next stop is nearby Mainz for commentary and a picture of the Gutenberg Monument dedicated the German printing of the Bible.
Our lodging this evening will be in Mainz. Overnight Mainz. (D)
Day 3: Eisenach
Following breakfast, we drive to Eisenach: “Almost all of my relatives live in Eisenach, and I’m known to them there and well respected; no other city knows me better”, as Luther said. We explore his city on a walking tour highlighting St. George’s Church where St. Elisabeth was married and J.S. Bach baptized; Luther House where Luther lived as a student with the Cotta family from 1498-1501, and the Luther exhibition documenting his life and theologies and the Bach Museum, the birth house of the famous composer Johann Sebastian Bach. Although he was born 200 years later than Luther he is the composer who influenced the protestant music the most. The next stop takes us to the magnificent Wartburg Castle to tour the Palas (Great Hall), Art exhibition, the Elisabeth Hallway, and the Luther Room where “Junker Jorg (The Knight George) translated the New Testament into German. Overnight Eisenach. (B)
Day 4: Buchenwald
This morning we visit Erfurt, the spiritual home of Martin Luther.
It was here that Luther obtained a degree in 1502 and a doctorate in the faculty of philosophy in 1505 and where he took the decisive step to turn to theology and the monastic life when he was caught in a violent thunderstorm nearby and took a vow to become a monk. Our walking tour begins in the historical section of the city including St. Mary’s Cathedral, where Luther was ordained as a priest, the Augustinian Monastery with a permanent exhibit depicting Luther’s life as a monk in Erfurt, and to the Church of St. Severus, where Luther preached his sermons. The city tour also includes the Fish Market, Town Hall and Merchant’s Bridge. We visit the concentration camp Buchenwald and its permanent exhibition and the ground. Our lodging this evening will be in Erfurt. Check-in to the hotel for overnight and dinner. (B)
Day 5: Eisleben, Halle, Naumburg, Erfurt
Our journey continues in the footsteps of the Martin Luther in nearby Eisleben; here we visit Luther’s birth house where he was born in 1483, and where he died in 1546, St. Peter’s Church where Luther was baptized and St. Andrews Church where Luther preached his last four sermons and where his body was laid in state. Next stop is Halle: its most famous son Georg Friedrich Händel was born here in 1685 and only left the city when he was 17. His birth house nowadays houses a museum. You stroll through the historical Old City which is one of largest in Germany and view and visit the Market Square with the Händel Monument, the Market Church with the death mask of Martin Luther and the Dome where Händel used to work as organist for one year before he left to London. Visit the Franke Foundations in Halle where Henry Melchior Muhlenberg was influenced to become the first Lutheran missionary to emigrate to the United States. He is considered the patriarch of the Lutheran Church in North America. He pastored the church in Trappe, PA but also helped plant Lutheran churches in other places such as Lancaster County. Overnight in Erfurt. (B)
Day 6: Leipzig, Torgau, Wittenberg
After breakfast we enjoy a scenic drive to visit the majestic city of Leipzig. We visit the Thomaskirche (St. Thomas
Church) where Luther preached
and Johann Sebastian Bach performed and directed the famous St. Thomas Boys choir. The next stop is Torgau: the city was the Saxonian residential city and political center of the Reformation in the 16th century. Martin Luther sanctified the Castle Church as the first Protestant church. The tombstone of Katharina von Bora, Martin Luther’s wife, can be found in St. Mary’s church. The only existing memorial for her is located in her last residence. Our lodging this evening will be in Wittenberg. Check-in to the hotel for overnight and dinner. (B,D)
Day 7: Wittenberg
We spend a full day in Wittenberg where Martin Luther lived and taught for 36 years. You will see the Castle Church door area where Luther posted his 95 Theses, giving birth to the Reformation. This beautiful church is also the burial site of Luther. We see the university where Luther taught and the Luther House which is the greatest museum of Reformation History in the world with a detailed history display of his life and accomplishments, historical documents and an outstanding collection of period paintings of his life and family members. (B)
Day 8: Berlin
We travel northeast to Berlin where we can enjoy a inspirational guided tour of this fascinating city including the Berlin Wall, Checkpoint Charlie, the Brandenburg Gate, Kaiser Wilhemstrasse Kirche, and many other sights. There will be free time this afternoon for shopping and sightseeing on your own. You can visit one of the fine museums such as Pergamon, GDR, Altes, or Bode, the Holocaust Memorial,or a local market. Check-in to the hotel for overnight and dinner. (B,D)
Day 9: Departure
We transfer to Berlin Airport and return flight. (B)
Itinerary subject to change while touring for the best interest of the group.