The most southern routes of the Luther Trail run through Bavaria, the Southern loop through the Coburger area is almost 100 km long. Coming from Thuringia, it connects Neustadt bei Coburg, Coburg and Bad Rodach – stations on Luther’s journey as well as stations of the history of the Reformation. Opened in 2012, visitors can walk through and experience locations of the Reformation in the Upper Franconian landscape on this part of the Luther Trail. Furthermore, this route leads along more than 20 churches and chapels that invite to have a break and to retreat.
More than once, Martin Luther visited Neustadt on his way to Coburg, where he preached in the Georg’s church. Coburg was one of his resting places too, both on his Rome journey in 1510/11, on the way to the Disputation of Heidelberg and to the interrogation in front of the Cajetan in Augsburg 1518.
Productive Period at the Veste Coburg Castle
For almost six months, Luther lived in the Veste Coburg Castle in connection to the Reichstag in Augsburg in 1530. Still threatened by the state-imposed imperial ban, he remained there in hiding. Plenty of writings prove an intensive working period of the Theologian during this time. Recorded are his works about the prophets Jeremiah and Ezekiel, the translation of the twelve small prophets and the so-called Coburger Psalter (Psalm 1-25). Furthermore, there are many leaflets, letters and essays about recent topics from this time.
Eventually, Bad Rodach was the venue of a political stage of the Reformation. In 1529, eleven Protestant classes merged to become a mutual aid pact with the help of the Rodacher Resignation – a precursor of the Schmalkaldic League in 1531. From Bad Rodach, the Luther Trail Bavaria runs in the direction of Eisfeld back to Thuringia.
The spiritual companion for the Luther Trail in Bavaria, “Auf Luthers Spuren durch das Coburger Land” (On the trail of Luther through the Coburger region), published by the Evangelic – Lutheran church district Coburg, covers information about the churches along the path, church guides, spiritual offers as well as impulses for prayers and meditation. Here, you can find a link to download (PDF / german) the book or you can get it as a printed version at the Evangelic-Lutheran church district Coburg.