Reformed Churchmen

We are Confessional Calvinists and a Prayer Book Church-people. In 2012, we remembered the 350th anniversary of the 1662 Book of Common Prayer; also, we remembered the 450th anniversary of John Jewel's sober, scholarly, and Reformed "An Apology of the Church of England." In 2013, we remembered the publication of the "Heidelberg Catechism" and the influence of Reformed theologians in England, including Heinrich Bullinger's Decades. For 2014: Tyndale's NT translation. For 2015, John Roger, Rowland Taylor and Bishop John Hooper's martyrdom, burned at the stakes. Books of the month. December 2014: Alan Jacob's "Book of Common Prayer" at: January 2015: A.F. Pollard's "Thomas Cranmer and the English Reformation: 1489-1556" at: February 2015: Jaspar Ridley's "Thomas Cranmer" at:

Sunday, December 21, 2014

21 December 1672 A.D. Benjamin Schmolck Born—German Lutheran Pastor in Romish Silesia

21 December 1672 A.D.  Benjamin Schmolck Born—German Lutheran Pastor in Romish Silesia

As usual, Mr. Graves does not know how to use the term “Catholic” as if Reformtion Christians were not “Catholic.”  He probably wasn’t reared on the Apostles, Nicene or Athanasian Creed.  Here’s the story from an evangelical-type.

Graves, Dan. “Daniel Schmolck in Catholic Silesia.”  Jul 2007.  Accessed 23 Jun 2014.

Benjamin Schmolck in Catholic SilesiaOne day, while Benjamin Schmolck was still a school boy, he came home and preached a sermon. His father was so pleased with it, that he vowed to find the money to equip his son with a theological education. Born on this day, December 21, 1672, at Brauchitzchdorf, Germany, Benjamin was the son of a Lutheran minister. He became a Lutheran pastor and hymn writer himself.

At the University of Leipzig, Benjamin came under the influence of godly instructors who passed their own deep faith on to him. While at university, he began to write poems for rich clients, a practice which provided him with extra income.

After graduation, he returned home in 1694, was ordained, and took his father's place. Eight years later, he went to Catholic Silesia, an Austrian-German region. The Catholic majority restricted the number of churches Lutherans could own. The church where Benjamin pastored was outside Schweidnitz. It served 36 villages and was not allowed to erect a steeple or tower.

There Benjamin worked for 35 years until his death. There he tangled with Catholic authorities and wrote many hymns--over 900. Many were sentimental or else strained too hard for grand effects. But a few were excellent. Bach used a text by Benjamin Schmolck in his cantata #35. All of Benjamin's hymns showed that Jesus was real in his life.

My Jesus, as you will! Oh, may your will be mine!
Into your hand of love, I would my all resign;
Through sorrow, or through joy, conduct me as your own,
And help me still to say, my Lord, your will be done!

At the age of 58, he was seated at home one Sunday in Spring when a stroke paralyzed him. Benjamin recovered enough to carry on his work, which he did for another five years. A second stroke then felled him for good.

The last seven years of his life he lay patiently in bed, blind and unable to speak. Still, he mustered the strength to place his hands on the heads of those who came for his blessing. Blessings and silent prayer were all he could do.

Benjamin died in February, 1737. He was much loved by his people because of his warm personality and genuine concern for spiritual things.


"Benjamin Schmolck."

"Benjamin Schmolck."

Schaff, Philip. New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1954.

"[Texts used by Bach]" bach/BWVanna.html

Various internet articles.

Last updated July, 2007

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