Tuesday, November 22, 2005



Deudsche Messe Vnd Ordnung Gottis Diensts


That Luther was fully aware of the general movement in the direction of the introduction of German into the public services we well know. In large measure this was but the working out of principles he had proclaimed, the attempt to realize in a practical manner what he had long declared desirable. But now that the movement is well under way, he is far from enthusiastic about it. He counsels moderation and delay, criticizes severely some of the forms which were introduced, and even opposes violently the idea that Services must be entirely in the vernacular.

The mystical Luther felt that true Christians ought to be able to worship in spirit without forms or ceremonies. The eminently practical Luther took men as they were, and fully appreciated the necessity of rites and ceremonies in public worship, and, in truth, himself found great pleasure in certain features, e.g. the music. The two Luthers were constantly struggling with each other. The practical and historically grounded, esthetic Luther always triumphed over the mystical Luther in matters connected with public worship. This was indeed fortunate, as it assured a subsequent healthy development which kept its feet on the ground, maintained historic continuity, and accepted the ministry of art in worship. The victory of mysticism would have meant the strengthening of Quakerism, as we now know it, and fanaticism, and the weakening of Protestantism in general.

But the struggle was one cause of delay and of seeming lack of enthusiasm.

Admitting the necessity and value of some form and order in worship, Luther dreaded absolute uniformity. He reacted so strongly from medieval ideas of a uniformly imposed order which must be kept, that he inclined to the other extreme He feared the creation of another rigid system as a substitute for the Roman system. He would have no new shibboleth as a test for ecclesiastical regularity. He would have no one think that true evangelical Christianity consisted in using a German Mass instead of the Roman Mass. Liberty, not law, must rule in worship as in other things.

Luther never admitted the absolute necessity of vernacular worship, however desirable he felt it to be. Writing against the fanatics in 1525 he had said that if those who heard Mass understood what the Latin Words of Institution meant, that would be “deutsch oder deutlich in herzen,” even if they sung in Latin. The general Renaissance and humanistic movement had developed a strong impulse toward the cultivation of the German language, not only as over against the Latin, but as against the Italian and French languages as well. There was danger in making the introduction of German into public worship simply a part of this humanistic or nationalistic program. German Services alone would not bring the millennium, as so many seemed to expect.

And if, in spite of all these things, vernacular Services must be prepared, Luther realized, as did few others, the greatness of the task. For, at least so far as he was concerned, the new Services must not be something new, a substitute for the historic Service, but the historic Service itself, with as much as possible of its finest features preserved, but in a form fully suited to the genius of the German language and the German people. Mere translation, which in itself would have been a great task, was not sufficient.

It must have “eine rechte deutsche Art.” And this included the music as well as the text. For Luther was not in sympathy with such efforts as produced the first German Service in Strassburg, which, for a time, were held only at side altars without music. He had said, “I do not forbid that one should translate the Latin text into German and retain the Latin music (Ton oder noten), but it does not work out artistically or properly. Both, — text and notes, accent, neumes, and form, — must proceed from mother tongue and voice; else all is mere imitation like the apes.” But this was a work for years, and for a host of translators and musicians. f204 These were some of the reasons why Luther did not rush rashly, as did some others, into the preparation of a German order of worship. He preferred to proclaim principles rather than to prepare forms, and he earnestly desired that ample time should be given for the gradual solution of the problem. But the times and the tides of popular feeling would not wait even for Luther. The importunities of those who looked to him for positive leadership could no longer be denied. He also could not fully approve what others had attempted, and he feared that the liberty he preached might run into license and destroy all reverence for holy things among the people. So, fully eight years after the publication of his Theses, he feels himself called to this work and enters upon it.


Luther called Bugenhagen and Jonas to aid him in the preparation of his German Service. He declared that he would not attempt the music of the Service alone, and the Elector sent him Johann Walther and Conrad Rupff, who assisted him in this part of the work. The new Service was introduced in the parish church at Wittenberg, October 29, 1525. The next Sunday, the Twenty-first Sunday after Trinity, Luther had the following to say about it to the congregation: “We have begun to attempt to establish a German Mass. You are aware that the Mass is the chief external office appointed for the comfort of the true Christian. Therefore I beg you Christians to beseech God that this may please Him. — If one does not himself order and establish, he may know that it pleases God. One should not fall into the idea that if he does not begin a thing himself, nothing will come of it. Therefore I have also so long restrained myself with reference to the German Masses, that I might give no cause to the evil spirits who thoughtlessly jump in without concern as to whether God wishes it. Now, however, since so many from all countries beseech me with letters and writings, and even bring worldly force to bear upon me, we can no longer excuse ourselves and protest, but must believe that it is God’s wish. If we produce something of our own, it shall perish and smell, even if it have the appearance of being beautiful and great. If, however, it be something of God’s, it must succeed, even though it appear foolish. All things which God does, even if they please no one, must have the right of way.

Therefore I beseech you that you pray God, that if it be a rightly ordered Service, it may go forth to His praise and honor.” f206


Luther now completed the new Service, and beginning with Christmas, 1525, it was used, at least in parts, at the parish church at Wittenberg on Sunday mornings, “on account of the uneducated lay-folk.” The Latin Service according to the Formula missae was continued in use on week days as before. The German Service appeared from the press early in 1526.

For notice of editions, etc., see W. A. 19.

Following is a summary of its contents:

The first half is devoted to a “Preface,” which discusses the general situation. The following extracts indicate its tenor. “I kindly beseech all who desire to follow this our order in divine service, that they, by no means make a necessary law out of it. We do not publish it with the intention to control anyone therein, or to rule with laws, but because everywhere the German Mass and Divine Service are insisted upon, and great complaint and scandal exist concerning the manifold forms of the new Masses.” “We should in love, as Paul teaches, endeavor to be of one mind, and in the best way possible to be of like forms and ceremonies, just as all Christians have one baptism, one sacrament, and to no person is given of God a special one.” “Yet I will not ask those who already have their good Order of Service, or who through God’s grace can make a better one, to let it go and yield to us. For it is not my intention, that all Germany should accept precisely our Wittenberg Order. But it would be excellent if in every principality Divine Services were conducted in the same form, and the surrounding towns and villages directly shared with a city.” “We must have such Order of Service for the sake of those who are yet to become Christians or to become stronger, just as a Christian does not need Baptism, the Word and sacraments as a Christian, (for he already has all things,) but as a sinner. But most of all it is done on account of the simple and the young, who are to be and must be exercised daily and educated in the Scripture and God’s Word.” “There is a threefold distinction in worship and the Mass. First a Latin Order, which we have before published and which is called the Formula missae. This I do not herewith wish to have abrogated or changed; but as we have hitherto observed it among us, so it shall be free to use the same, where and when we please or occasion requires; for I in no way wish to banish the Latin language from Divine Service. For it concerns me to do everything for the young; and if I were able, and the Greek and the Hebrew language were as familiar to us as the Latin, and had as much fine music and hymnology as the Latin has: then should Mass be celebrated, sung and read one Sunday after another in all four languages, German, Latin, Greek and Hebrew. I do not at all agree with those who give themselves to only one language and despise all others.” “Secondly, there is the German Mass and Divine Service, of which we now treat, which are to be arranged on account of the uneducated laity.” “The third form, which the right kind of evangelical service should have, must not be celebrated so publicly before all sorts of people; but those who mean to be Christians in earnest, and to confess the Gospel with hand and mouth, must register their names and assemble somewhere in a house alone for prayer, to read, baptize, receive the sacrament, and to perform other Christian works. Here there would be no need of much elaborate singing. Here also baptism and the sacrament might be celebrated in a short, good form, and everything be directed to the Word, and to prayer and to love. But I cannot yet, nor do I like to order or establish such a congregation or assembly. For I have not yet the people and persons for it; and I do not see many who insist upon it. f207 Meanwhile I will only insist upon the aforesaid two orders.” “For the first thing, a good, simple, plain, easy catechism is necessary in German worship.

The way in which instruction can be given is then developed at some length.

The Preface concludes with a fanciful idea concerning the “faith purse” and the “love purse,” as containing the treasures of the Christian. “And let no man think himself too wise and despise such child’s play. Christ, when He wished to draw men, was obliged to become man. If we are to draw children, then we must also become children with them.”

Then follows a chapter “Concerning Divine Worship,” in which Luther’s characteristic pedagogical view is emphasized. “The principal part is to preach and teach God’s Word.” On Sunday there are three sermons on the usual Epistle and Gospel Lessons. The first Service, at five or six, is chiefly for servants, and the greater part of the Matin order is used. The Mass is at eight or nine, with a sermon on the Gospel. At Vespers the sermon is on the Old Testament. The Gospels and Epistles are retained, because “we find nothing particular to blame in such an arrangement,” and “since many are in Wittenberg to learn to preach where this custom still prevails.”

Monday and Tuesday there is instruction in German in parts of the Catechism at the early Service. On Wednesday, early, the Gospel of Matthew is explained; and Saturday afternoon, St. John’s Gospel. On Thursday and Friday there are Lessons from the Epistles. “We thus have Lessons and Sermons enough to keep God’s Word in full swing, without the lectures in the University for the learned.” In towns where there are schools, Latin Psalms are sung by the boys daily before the Lesson to exercise the youth in the Latin Scriptures, and several chapters are read in Latin by different boys, after which another reads the same chapter in German, “To exercise them and to benefit any layman who may be present and listening.”

Then follows a chapter on “Sunday for the Laity.” “We there allow Mass vestments, altar, and lights still to remain, until they are no longer serviceable or it pleases us to change. But whoever wishes in this to proceed otherwise, we allow it to be done. But in the true Mass, among the real Christians, the altar must not remain so, and the priest must always turn himself to the people, as without doubt Christ did at the Last Supper. But, let that bide its time.”

The order of the Sunday Service is as follows: (a) “In the beginning we sing a hymn, or a German Psalm, in the First Tone.” This is a substitution of German hymns for the Latin Introits, such as Luther and others had begun to publish a year before, or of an entire German Psalm sung antiphonally. It is not clear who is to sing this. Liliencron is convinced that only a practiced choir could have sung the Psalm and the Kyrie which follows in the First Gregorian Tone. f209 (b) The Kyrie, in the same Tone, but threefold instead of ninefold, as in the Roman Use.

The Gloria in Excelsis is not mentioned. This may be as Rietschel surmises, because Luther thought of it as belonging to the Kyrie, and took its use for granted. Liliencron (p. 28) mentions Schumann’s Hymn Book of 1539 in which Luther’s Order of Service is given with a German translation of the Gloria included. In the Formula missae, however, Luther suggests the possible omission of the Gloria if the pastor desires. (c) The Collect, read (intoned) in F, facing the Altar. The text given appears to be a translation of the Collect for the Third Sunday after Trinity. (d) The Epistle, in the Eighth Tone, facing the people. The passage 1 Corinthians 4:1-5 is given, set to notes. (e) A German hymn (as Gradual), e.g., “Nun bitten wir den Heiligen Geist” with the whole choir. (f) The Gospel, in the Fifth Tone. John 1:19-28 is given, set to music. (g) Luther’s German translation of the Nicene Creed, — “Wit glauben all an einen Gott,” — sung by the entire congregation. (h) A Sermon on the Gospel. Luther thinks if there were complete German Postils (collections of sermons on the Gospels for the Church Year), it would be well to read these to the people, “Not alone for the sake of the preachers, who cannot do any better, but also to guard against enthusiasts and sects. Otherwise,. it will finally come to pass that each one will preach as he pleases, and instead of the Gospel and its exposition, men will preach again about blue ducks.” (i) A free (offentliche) Paraphrase of the Lord’s Prayer, and an Exhortation to the communicants. These are read either from the pulpit, or at the altar, as the pastor may choose. Luther gives forms of each, not as binding, but as illustrations of what he desires. He begs that, whatever form is used, it be adhered to regularly in the same congregation, so as not to confuse the people. f210 Then follows the Office (Amt) and Consecration. All the prayers of the Mass are omitted and the Order proceeds at once to (j) The Words of Institution, according to 1 Corinthians 11:23ff, with phrases from the Synoptists, being a slight expansion of the form given in the Formula missae, and precisely the form given in the Common Service Book. The Words were said silently by the priest in the Mass, but are now sung aloud to a melody which Luther gives.

Luther suggests that it would be “in accord with the Lord’s Supper if the Sacrament were administered immediately after the consecration of the Bread, before one blesses the Cup,” and that the German Sanctus, or another hymn, might be sung, with the German Agnus Dei, or the remainder of the other hymn, during the administration of the Cup. Also that the men and the women should stand in separate places, and the men receive the Sacrament first, and after them the women. f211 (k) The Elevation of the Elements, Luther specifically retained, for the curious reason that “it well agrees with the German Sanctus,” and as an act of faith and devotion to the Lord, Who “is not seen,” but yet “remembered and exalted.” Luther was doubtless influenced by popular feeling with regard to the importance of the Elevation and also particularly by Carlstadt’s fanatical determination to make its abrogation compulsory. Although abolished in the Augustinian cloister, as early as 1524, it was retained in the parish church in Wittenberg, probably in deference to Luther’s wishes, until 1542, when Bugenhagen, who had omitted it in all his Church Orders, finally dropped it in Wittenberg also, with Luther’s consent. The latter, however, reserved his freedom to reintroduce it if necessary “because of heresy or other reasons.” Just the year before his death he approved the desire of the Lutheran bishop, George you Anhalt, to retain it. f212 (l) The German Sanctus, “Jesajai dem Propheten das geschah,” a versification which Luther composed, and one of the poorest he ever made, is to be sung during the distribution. (m) The Collect of Thanksgiving, “We give thanks to Thee, Almighty God, etc.” as in the Common Service Book, p. 23. f213 (n) The Aaronitic Benediction (“The Lord bless thee and keep thee, etc.”) Then follow examples of the Epistles and Gospels, set to notes for choral reading. “But with the festivals, as Christmas, Easter, Pentecost, Michaelmas, Purification of Mary, and the like, it must continue as hitherto in Latin, till we have enough German hymns for them. For this work is in its beginning, consequently not everything is ready that belongs to it.” “The fasts of Palm-Day and Holy Week we allow to remain; not that we compel any one to fast, but that the Passion and the Gospels, which are set for this time should remain; yet not in such a manner that one observes the black cloth over the altar, palm processions, covering pictures and other jugglery, or sing four Passions, or have to preach eight hours on Good Friday on the Passion; but Holy Week shall be like other weeks, except that one preach the Passion one hour a day through the week, or as many days as desired, and as many as desire may receive the Sacrament.

For among Christians everything in worship is to be done for the sake of the Word and Sacraments.” “In short, this order and all others are to be used in such a manner that where an abuse is made of them, one may straightway abolish them and make another. just as when a good coin is counterfeited, it is taken up and changed on account of the abuse; or as when new shoes become old and pinch, they are no longer worn, but thrown away and others bought.”


The German Mass, even more than Luther’s Latin Service, is a treatise rather than a formula. In its preparation Luther seems to have been influenced but little, if at all, by the work of others. Strassburg and Switzerland, and indeed southwest Germany in general, effected Wittenberg but slightly. The German Masses already published, while they may have slightly influenced Luther in the direction of simplicity, probably confirmed him in his conviction that if provision must be made for Services in German throughout, these must be the historic Order of the Mass and nothing else, simplified and adapted to the limited capacities of the laity of the time.

The use of German throughout, and the emphasis upon German hymns, are its outstanding features. In general, the historic Order is retained, with the traditional appointments and ceremonies, e.g., the altar, vestments, lights, orientation, and even the Elevation. Every part of the Service is in the vernacular, except the Kyrie. Certain elements, formerly sung in Latin by the choir, e.g., Introit, Gradual, Creed, Sanctus, etc., are made congregational hymns. In the Communion itself, nearly all the parts of the Service found in the Formula missae are retained, but in different form and order. The Preface, the oldest and most universal part of the Christian Liturgy, is omitted, and only absolutely scriptural elements are retained, e.g., The Words of Institution (sung aloud), the Lord’s Prayer and the Sanctus. The Lord’s Prayer is transformed into a simple Paraphrase, which concludes with an original Exhortation to the communicants, and is placed before the Words of Institution. Nothing is said concerning formulas of distribution. The Collects and Prayers, etc., are fixed forms, and not left to the spontaneous inspiration of the pastor. The pedagogical purpose overtones the devotional throughout, and in spirit, as well as in form, the writing reveals the fact that, in the mind of the author, it possesses limited rather than universal significance. f214


Estimates of the German Mass differ greatly according to the point of view. Those who regard the German Service as the climax of the labors of the Reformation, see in it the long looked-for stroke of freedom; those who desire an Order of Worship with some historic features, but with as many departures from the old forms as possible, give it extravagant praise.

Those who believed that evangelical worship must depart from the historic order altogether, and be built upon other foundations, find Zwingli and the Strassburgers more original than Luther, and credit the latter with liturgical incompetency; those who exalt the earlier attempts to provide German Services, charge Luther with egotism and selfish desire for leadership in bringing out his own Service and ignoring the others.

The German Mass clearly is not Luther’s greatest liturgical work. Luther himself never so regarded it. The Elector desired to introduce it everywhere by authority, but Luther would not agree. He never gave up the general type of service he had outlined in the Formula missae. He never intended the Deutsche Messe as a universal substitute for this, but simply as a Service for the uneducated laity, the historic order indeed, but simplified and adapted to the needs and abilities of a part of the people, at a particular time in their development. If we wish to know Luther’s mature ideas on worship, we can find them in the later orders for Wittenberg (1533) and Saxony (1539), and in less direct manner, in the other Church Orders prepared by his colleagues in the Wittenberg faculty, undoubtedly with his constant advice.

The report of his travels which Wolfgang Muskulus, pastor in Augsburg, published, gives a complete account of the Services in the parish Church in Wittenberg on Exaudi Sunday in the year 1536. The Introit, Gloria in Excelsis and Agnus Dei were all sung in Latin, the choir and the organ alternating according to an old church custom. The minister, in full vestments, and the clerk (Kuster) knelt before the altar and said the Confiteor. The minister then ascended the altar steps. The Service Book, as in pre-Reformation practice, was on the south side of the altar and was moved to the north side for the reading of the Gospel. The minister intoned the Salutation, Collect, Epistle and Gospel, all in Latin. Bucer preached the Sermon. Luther, Melanchthon, Bugenhagen, and Fabricius Capito were present. The Lord’s Prayer and the Words of Institution (facing the altar), as well as the Thanksgiving and the Benediction,. were intoned in German, and German hymns were sung by the congregation. Luther was seized with a “schwindel” during the Service, and left the Church, followed by Melanchthon. Bugenhagen, Capito and Bucer received the Sacrament.

Luther preached at Vespers on the Epistle for the day. f216 The pedagogical purpose is evident throughout the entire Deutsche Messe.

It meets a certain class of the people on their own level, and endeavors to instruct and edify them; to make the non-Christians, Christians, and the weak Christians stronger Christians; and to furnish the youth with Christian truth. It seeks to promote congregational participation, and in order to do this, and also to preserve as much of the historic Service as possible for use in the villages, etc., where there were no capable choirs, it provides numerous German metrical versifications. This we must think of largely as an experiment, an effort to take advantage of a popular movement, and to put to churchly use the recently awakened enthusiasm for German hymns.

Generally speaking, the Lutheran Church as a whole, in its normal and best development in all lands, with occasional exceptions as to this or that feature, particularly in southern and southwestern Germany, has rejected most of the peculiar, and largely experimental features of the Deutsche Messe, such as the omission of the Gloria in Excelsis (which even Zwingli retained), the omission of the Preface, the versifications of the Creed and the Sanctus, the paraphrase of the Lord’s Prayer, (which opened the way for grave abuses in the period of Rationalism), the impracticable division of the Verba, and twofold administration of the Elements, and the retention of the Elevation.

The transfer of the Lord’s Prayer to a place before the Verba was one of the few distinctive features to gain general acceptance, though some Orders of the first rank never adopted it. But this, certainly, was a mistake, due to the impulse of the moment to introduce a catechetical feature, viz., the Paraphrase of the Lord’s Prayer. It created permanent confusion in all subsequent Lutheran Orders of Service. Luther’s approval and use of an Exhortation to the communicants doubtless kept that feature in most Lutheran Services, though the earlier Nurnberg form generally appears in the Church Orders instead of Luther’s form. Later Lutheran development (as in the Common Service Book), while appreciating the didactic and devotional value of such an Exhortation, felt its unliturgical character in the Service proper, and has given it a more appropriate place in the Service of Public Confession preparatory to the Holy Communion.

The judgment of the Church, as expressed in the subsequent development of worship, has positively approved the principle of Services in the vernacular throughout, the conservative and churchly type of worship, with its adherence to historic elements and order and to fixed forms of expression, the great development of congregational hymns, and the extension of active congregational participation in worship to include a very large part of the Service. These important features, which are now the commonplaces of Protestant worship, were very largely established, not only for Lutheran Services but for many other Communions in all lands, by the principles and forms first laid down, or first gaining general acceptance, in Luther’s German Mass.


Bibliography Texts — See General Introduction, p. 168.

Comments — Rietschel, Lehrbuch der Liturgic Fendt , Luth. Gottesdienst d. 16 Jahrh.

Church Review 10:217ff Jacoby , Liturgik der Reformatoren Memoirs of the Lutheran Liturgical Association, 4:29.


Despite the pressure upon Luther to give the people an order of service in the vernacular he proceeded very slowly, particularly since the radical “prophets,” Munzer and Karlstadt, made it a matter of conscience.

Karlstadt had introduced a German version of the Mass in Wittenberg in 1521 during Luther’s absence at the Wartburg; on his return Luther promptly restored the Latin Mass.

There was a genuine demand for the Service in the language of the people.

Here and there a German liturgy was introduced as early as 1522. Such cities as Nuremberg and Strassburg changed to the German service in 1524. Zwingli in Zurich and Oekolampadius in Basel gave the people the service in their own tongue in 1525.

Luther expressed his thoughts in the treatise “Against the Heavenly Prophets,” published toward the end of 1524, as follows: “That the Mass is now held in German, pleases me, but when he (sc. Karlstadt) would make it a law, that it must be so, he goes too far. “I really want to have the Mass in German now, and I am working on it, but I also want it to be cast in a true German mould. Text and music, accent, mode and manner must be thoroughly suited to the mother-tongue and idiom, or it will be mere ape-like imitation. “Since they press me for it, I will take my time about it.” The following year Luther gave himself to the task and sent an outline of his proposed “German” Mass to the Elector of Saxony who had added his persuasion to that of others to induce Luther to undertake it. The Elector sent Conrad Rupff and Johann Walther to Wittenberg to assist in the musical notation.

There is still extant a sheet from Luther’s hand which he had probably sent to Walther to illustrate his ideas on the adaptation of the Gregorian melodies to the German words. f218 On October 25, 1525, Luther wrote to Johann Lang: “We ourselves outlined a form of worship and sent it to the Elector and by his command it is now elaborated. Next Sunday it will be given a public trial in the name of Christ. “There will be a German Mass for the laity, but the daily services will be in Latin with German Scripture lessons, as you may see in brief when the printed copies are out. Then, if you choose, you can make your worship conform to ours, or you can use your own. In the meantime keep on with what you are doing.” f219 On October 29, 1525, the twentieth Sunday after Trinity, the trial took place in the Parish Church at Wittenberg.

At the conclusion of the sermon Luther addressed the congregation, stating that one must be sure of doing God’s will in beginning or ordering anything new, and that since he had received many letters petitioning for such an Order in German and had been pressed by the temporal powers for it, he could no longer make excuses and must look upon it as God’s will.

On Christmas Day, 1525, the new Order became the official Order for the Wittenberg Church.

The chief difference between this Order and the Formula missae of 1523 is its omission of the Gloria in excelsis after the Kyrie. The Roman liturgy provided for its omission during Advent and Lent. Bugenhagen in the Brunswick Order of 1528 prescribed it with the proviso that it “may be omitted at times.” The Wittenberg Order of 1533 reintroduced it for festival days.

The musical notation is not given with this translation. It would be unintelligible for the modern reader without considerable adaptation. The service as written is choral throughout, including the Epistle and Gospel, and the musical text is written on a four line system, with change of key whenever the melody goes beyond the four lines. The Weimar Edition reproduces the original; a modernized version is given in the Berlin Edition and a further modification in adaptation to the English words would take us quite a distance from the original. It has never been determined just how much of the musical notation is Luther’s own.

The Deutsche Messe is found in Weimar Ed. 19, 44ff.; Erl. Ed. 22, 226ff.; Berlin Ed. 7, 159ff.; Clemen Ed. 3, 294ff.

New York.


1 comment:

Carl Vehse said...

One particular liturgical obsession that is pushed by Romanophiles in the Missouri Synod, is the use of the word, “Mass,” to refer to the Lord’s Supper. Some Lutherans claim that Martin Luther’s denouncing the Mass as “the greatest and most horrible abomination” in his 1536 Smalcald Articles (Part II, Art. II) refers to the Roman Mass, and thus is not applicable to the use of the word, "Mass," such as in his 1526 "German Mass”, which had been purged of Roman heresies.

To the contrary, as Missouri Synod Lutheran Rev. Daniel Preus discussed in his paper, “Luther and the Mass" (Logia, 10:4, 2001,13-19):

"By 1533, however, Luther came to the conclusion that 'mass' should no longer be used in reference to the sacrament of the altar. Luther’s Letter Concerning His Book on the Private Mass [AE:38, 139-214; WA 38:195-256] is very illuminating in regard to his distinction between the two. In this letter Luther provided a definition of the term 'mass' that clearly drives a wedge between mass and sacrament. According to Luther, 'mass' refers

"to what the priest does alone at the altar, to which no ordinary Christian or layman adds anything. For they indeed know that no layman or ordinary Christian can celebrate mass and they will not allow it. Nor do they allow it to be or to be called a mass when a layman receives the sacrament; but they . . . alone celebrate mass; all other Christians simply receive the sacrament and do not celebrate mass."

"The word 'mass,' Luther believed, should be defined as the sacrifice that the priest offers for sin. It should never be used to speak of that sacrament which grants to believers the body and blood of Christ and the forgiveness of sins. He spoke of the time when he himself could not differentiate between the two:

"For me mass and sacrament at the altar were one and the same thing, as they were at that time for all of us. Yet they are not one and the same thing. It is the mass when I sacrifice the sacrament to God for my sins and the sins of others as a work performed by human beings (whether they be evil or godly) . . . it is the sacrament when I receive from the priest the body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ under the bread and wine."

"Luther was convinced that the use of the terms 'mass' and 'sacrament' interchangeably has resulted in great confusion, and that the only way to provide a clear understanding of the nature of the Lord's Supper is to stop calling it the mass. "Indeed, I wish and would very much like to see and hear that the two words 'mass' and 'sacrament' would be understood as being as different as darkness and light, yes, as different as devil and God." Again Luther prayed,

"May God grant to all devout Christians such hearts that when they hear the word 'mass,' they might be frightened and make the sign of the cross as though it were the devil's abomination; on the other hand, when they hear the word 'sacrament' or 'Lord's Supper' they might dance for pure joy…"