Descendant of Martin Luther to Speak at Newberry College Founder's Day Convocation

November 09, 2011



Newberry, SC, November 8, 2011 – Christian Priesmeier, a 13th generation descendant of Lutheran Church Founder Martin Luther, will be present at the Newberry College 155th Founder’s Day Convocation. Newberry College is the southern-most Lutheran college in North America, and will celebrate Luther’s birthday by hosting Priesmeier as the featured speaker at the Convocation event.


Priesmeier will visit classes and make a joint presentation Thursday evening with Dr. Pat Graham from Pitts Theological Library at Emory University. Dr. Graham will be bringing items from the acclaimed Richard C. Kessler Reformation Collection housed at Emory, which features over 1,000 publications by Luther himself, and over 3,500 original books, pamphlets, and manuscripts that deal with 16th century German Reformation.


“We are honored to have such a significant figure taking part in the celebrations, particularly the relative of a man who essentially made our College possible,” Newberry College President Dr. V. Scott Koerwer said. “Since 1856, we have been a College grounded in our Lutheran values, and have provided a Christian education for our students to carry with them for the rest of their lives.”


Priesmeier is a Seminary trained licensed lay minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Germany, who lectures, leads worship, and delivers sermons. He is also the secretary of the governing board of Lutheriden Vereinigong, a genealogical society of documented Luther descendants or those of Martin’s siblings.


The Convocation will take place on Friday, November 11, 2011, from 10 – 11 a.m. in the Wiles Chapel.


About Newberry College
A private, residential, co-educational, college with a diverse student population, Newberry College offers baccalaureate degrees in 24 majors, 31 minors, and 27 areas of concentration. Founded in 1856 by the Lutheran Church, the college is accredited by The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education, and the National Association of Schools of Music. The college has a radio and television station, and offers 16 NCAA Division II sports. In the recent 2012 ranking of the Best Colleges in U.S. News & World Report, Newberry College placed in the top tier of regional colleges in the South. For more information, visit

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