Zwingli and the 'Sausage Supper'

Posted at 5 Minutes in Church History with Stephen Nichols:

On this episode of 5 Minutes in Church History we’re going to go back to one of our favorite topics, the Reformation, and we’re going to talk about what I think is one of the most interesting events in all of church history. This is the famous sausage supper of 1522.

Well we need to set the stage for you. Christopher Froschauer is the printer in the city of Zurich in Switzerland. The printer was a very prestigious person in the 16th century. This was a person of some wealth, a person of some influence and power, and a very respected citizen. Christopher Froschauer and his understudies and his apprentices had all been very busy. They just completed a new edition of Saint Paul’s epistles, and they wanted to celebrate. So they decided to have a sausage supper.

Now, what we need to know is this was on a Friday, and it was in the spring, and it was during Lent. So yes, you can connect the dots here—this was not allowed according to church law. You could not eat meat on Fridays during Lent. But here’s Christopher Froschauer, a respectable citizen of the city, not only is he a respectable citizen but he also invites the town priest Ulrich Zwingli to come to the sausage supper.

Legend has it that Zwingli was there, that he might have even helped serve to sausage but he himself did not eat. But nevertheless, there he was and these citizens were eating and had this sausage supper and this caused quite a scandal.


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