Learning the Word in Geneva: John Calvin the Catechist

in Douglas Gragg and John Weaver, eds., Reading for Faith and Learning: Essays on Scripture, Community, and Libraries in Honor of M. Patrick Graham (Abilene, TX: Abilene Christian University Press, 2017), 115-128

Emory Legal Studies Research Paper

11 Pages Posted: 28 Dec 2017 Last revised: 29 Jul 2019

Date Written: December 22, 2017

Abstract

Genevan Reformer John Calvin produced a half dozen catechisms during his tenure in the city from 1536 to 1538 and 1541 to 1564. While not nearly so well-known as his Institutes of the Christian Religion or Geneva Bible, and not nearly so heavily used today as the later Reformed catechisms of Heidelberg or Westminster, Calvin’s catechisms were impressive for their biblical acuity, pristine language, and doctrinal precision and for their power to integrate the far flung Calvinist communities of the sixteenth century. This Article samples these catechisms, and analyzes their use in spiritual formation and discipline for both children and adults in Geneva.

Keywords: John Calvin; Geneva; catechism; Decalogue; Lord’s Prayer; Apostle’s Creed; spiritual discipline; Consistory; schooling; Sunday worship

Suggested Citation

Witte, John, Learning the Word in Geneva: John Calvin the Catechist (December 22, 2017). in Douglas Gragg and John Weaver, eds., Reading for Faith and Learning: Essays on Scripture, Community, and Libraries in Honor of M. Patrick Graham (Abilene, TX: Abilene Christian University Press, 2017), 115-128, Emory Legal Studies Research Paper, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3092249

John Witte (Contact Author)

Emory University School of Law ( email )

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