Ecumenically Speaking: Argula von Grumbach

This week, we’ll be celebrating the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity by highlighting historical figures who were practicing ecumenism before it was cool, acting with charity and forbearance toward their fellow Christians.

Portrait medal of Argula von Grumbach, around 1520. Photo by Hans Schwarz. Public domain via Creative Commons.

Argula von Grumbach (1492 – 1554 or 1557) was a Bavarian noblewoman, a wife and mother, and a passionate reformer of the church. A contemporary and friend of Martin Luther, she used her strong command of scripture and the written word to create German pamphlets that supported his work of reform. She was also instrumental in arranging a conversation between leaders of the Wittenbergers and the South German and Swiss Protestants during the Diet of Augsburg, bridging a theological gap over the presence of Christ in the Eucharist that bore fruit in the Wittenberg Concord of 1536. *

“The word of God must be our weapon. We must not hit out with weapons, but love our neighbor, and keep peace with one another.”


Have a suggestion of an ecumenical trendsetter? Leave us a comment or let us know at


* Matheson, Peter. Argula von Grumbach: A Woman before Her Time. Euguene, Oregon:                    Cascade Books, 2013.

Other posts in this series:

Count Nikolaus von Zinzendorf

Henry Constable

John Amos Comenius

Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz

John Dury

Caritas Pirckheimer

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