by Albert J. Tricarico Jr.
Martin Rinkart was a German pastor who served in unspeakably dark times. The Thirty Years War (1618–1648) was in full force, and Rinkart’s town of Eilenburg was feeling its burden. Not only did Eilenburg serve as a refuge for people displaced by the deadly conflict, it was host to a terrible plague that took the health and lives of thousands. Eventually Rinkart found himself the only remaining pastor in town providing spiritual help to the suffering. In 1637, at the height of the plague’s destruction, he conducted over four thousand funerals, including the service for his dear wife. Composing a Song of Thanksgiving How should a Christian respond when feeling the unique stresses and sorrows that come amidst such devastation? Pastor Rinkart wrote a hymn. Most of us know it and have sung it. We may soon sing it during the Thanksgiving season. Rinkart composed it in 1636 and used it as his prayer until his death in 1649, the year after the war ended. Now thank we all our God ... Read more
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