Martin Luther vs. Florence Nightingale

A day after Stephen became the first saint to make it to the Faithful Four, by defeating Augustine of Canterbury 62% to 38%, the Elate Eight rolls on!

Today it’s Martin Luther taking on Florence Nightingale in a matchup featuring two saintly heavyweights of kitsch. To make it to this point, Martin defeated David Oakerhater and Joseph Schereschewsky while Florence got the best of Anselm of Canterbury and Henry Beard Delany.

Yes, folks, March Madness may be done (congrats to the North Caroline Tar Heels) but Lent Madness is just heating up!

Martin Luther

Martin Luther loved life! He loved to drink beer. He loved to eat. And, he loved to wrestle with his faith with other clever, inquisitive people.

As we commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in 2017, the creation of Martin Luther kitsch (or lovely commemorative keepsakes, depending upon your perspective) has cranked up.

If you make the pilgrimage to Wittenberg, Germany you’ll certainly want to taste some of their famous Luther Biere which you may drink from a Luther stein!




And, since you wouldn’t want to drink too much beer on an empty stomach, you might as well purchase some Luther wurst topped off by Lutherbrodt (Luther bread) for dessert.







Of course, you’ll want to bring home a souvenir or two from your sojourn. There are plenty of t-shirts to be found, as in any town catering to tourists. 
But, for something truly special, you’ll stand proudly in your “Here I Stand” socks. Or, for warmer weather, Luther flip flops.






Scholars may think that Brother Martin never actually stated “Here I Stand, I can do no other” at the Diet of Worms, but it is popular and we aren’t going to let go of this catchy phrase anytime soon!

Or, perhaps you could tuck small souvenirs in the corners of your suitcase for the kitchen workers in your church back home; a Martin Luther cookie cutter!




Courtesy of several websites, you don’t have to go to Wittenberg to collect Martin Luther paraphernalia. In February 2015, the Playmobil company announced that their then newly launched Martin Luther Playmobil figure had sold out of the first 34,000 figures manufactured in less than 72 hours! Sales are now over 500,000 of the little plastic reformer!

If you’d like something equally fun, but a bit more edifying, you’ll enjoy Papa Luther: A Graphic Novel or, The Life of Martin Luther: A Pop-Up Book.






A popular decorative element on a wide range of Luther kitsch is the Luther Rose. This seal was designed in 1530 for Martin at the behest of Luther’s protector, John Frederick, Elector of Saxony.





Earrings? Tie? Pillow? Temporary tattoo? (you just can’t make this stuff up!)

Martin Luther had a sense of humor, so while I’m guessing he would be astonished by the fuss in this 500th year after he hoped to share some reforming ideas with other scholars, I think he’d chuckle and go right along with the jokes! And, he’d especially enjoy the fact that Pope Francis and Protestant leaders from around the globe are commemorating this 500-year milestone together.

Beth Lewis

Florence Nightingale

If you have a nurse in your life that you’d like to thank, here are the top 10 “Florence Nightingale” gifts that you can give!

1. Every nurse secretly wants to be the original Florence Nightingale. For just $19.99, you can give your special nurse that opportunity with his/her own special Florence Nightingale costume:

2. Is your nurse not the type to dress up? Never fear, you can get your special nurse their own troll doll dressed like Florence to ride on the dash of their automobile for a cheap $10.00 on Etsy: 

3. If you really love your nurse, grab that special person a 1st edition copy of Florence Nightingale’s “Notes on Nursing.” Drop your bid over on Ebay for a mere $625.00. Every nurse should have a copy of “Notes on Nursing.”

4. If your nurse likes to show his/her Nightingale pride, this shirt is just the thing for $21.99.






5. Every nurse today needs a Nightingale lamp for those graveyard shifts when the generator fails. For just $18, your nurse can let their light shine, just like Florence Nightingale.

6. Many nurses take, or have taken, the Nightingale Pledge when they graduate from nursing school. You can purchase your special nurse this beautifully framed copy of the pledge that shows their dedication to their fellow man:
7. Have you been so moved by the story of Florence Nightingale that you’d like to encourage your son or daughter to follow in her footsteps? Start telling them the story of Florence Nightingale and her courage during the Crimean War. It’s now on SALE in the Easy store.










8. Share the prayer of Florence Nightingale with your special nurse and let them know that they touched your life in a special way.

9. After a long shift at work, what every nurse really wants is a foot rub. Known as the “Nightingale Special,” a foot, back, or any kind of massage is just the ticket to show your special nurse that their work matters.

10. Finally, while someone is giving your nurse a foot rub, whip up the “Nightingale cocktail” to help your special nurse unwind:

The Nightingale cocktail recipe is made from banana liqueur, triple sec, light cream and egg white, and served in a chilled sherry glass.
Shake all ingredients vigorously with ice in a cocktail shaker. Strain into a chilled sherry glass and serve.

More seriously, forget the kitsch and craziness above, if you have ever been sick, or injured, or afraid, and have been blessed by the caring hands of a nurse, say a prayer of thanks for Florence Nightingale. Every nurse today has been influenced by her legacy. Thanks Flo, the love of God is indeed in the face of every patient we touch.

Anna Fitch Courie

Martin Luther vs. Florence Nightingale

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