Wendish Research Exchange
"Our mission is to document the Wendish/Sorbian experience through research, information exchange, collaboration, and the promotion of related projects."
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Slavic Protestants in Exile: The Exulanten in Saxony

Produced and edited by Weldon Mersiovsky

Available now, at the Texas Wendish Heritage Museum
Call for more information - 979-366-2441
Or visit the museum at 1011 County Road 212, Giddings (Serbin), Texas
 



Christian Adolph Pescheck described the Bohemian emigration in the 17th century in the volume Die Böhmischen Exulanten in Sachsen. It was, to a large extent, a study about the refugees of the Lutheran confession who, since the Thirty Years War, left Bohemia, Moravia, Slovakia or Silesia and settled, in large numbers, in Saxony. They belonged, for a long time, to a rarely researched group of migrants of the 17th century when compared with those of the Huguenots or the Protestants from Salzburg. Nevertheless, the thousands of migrants who settled in Saxony in the 17th and 18th centuries and their descendants did not forget their act of faith that is recorded in this study.

Weldon Mersiovsky could be summed up in one Wendish word, Radyserb, which means “glad to be a Wend.” While he knew he was Wendish when a young man, he did not become fascinated to the point of obsession with his ethnic heritage until he was about 25 when he fully discovered his roots. Since that time he has researched all of his immigrant ancestors, Mersiovskys, Schmidts, Lorenz’, Zwahrs, Krauses, Jurks, Koals, and Mirtschings, and gladly assists others in their searches. Now 68, while still helping others with their familial and ancestral searches, he has determined to uncover all that is possible to uncover about the Texas Wends and German Sorbs. The results of this ongoing coordinated research and ongoing translation into English of works and documents written in German and Wendish have been placed on the website of the Wendish Research Exchange (www.wendishresearch.org). The sole beneficiary of Weldon’s activities is the Texas Wendish Heritage Society and its members and friends.

The project of translating Bohemian Exulanten in Saxony took Weldon in a slightly different direction, as it portrays the real-life experiences of religious exiles (Exulanten) who, because of their faith, changed the world we live in. If your ancestral research is stalled in Saxony or Prussia in the 18th or 17th century, he is hoping that you might be able to use this book to find your ancestral roots.

Preface by Robert Kolb, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Missouri.



 

Five Centuries: The Wends and the Reformation
Coming soon! Produced by:
The Wendish Press (Weldon Mersiovsky)
Concordia University Press (Dave Zersen)

Available soon, at the Texas Wendish Heritage Museum
Call for more information - 979-366-2441
Or visit the museum at 1011 County Road 212, Giddings (Serbin), Texas

 


This … most welcome addition to the literature on the history of the Wends … will be of particular value to the (now) anglophone Lutheran Wends in Australia and the USA (to whom a whole chapter is devoted) [and] it is also of great importance to historians of Central Europe more generally. It contains much information that is not accessible in other sources.

  - Gerald Stone, Ph.D. Fellow of the British Academy and Emeritus Fellow of Hertford College, University of Oxford


Devoted to an often neglected [area], the past and present of the Reformation among the Wends, Luther’s closest non-German-speaking neighbors. This English edition retains the pictorial wealth of the original and presents a fascinating kaleidoscope of the indelible imprint of the Reformation on Wendish life.

  - Roland Marti, Ph.D. Professor of Slavonic Philology, University of the Saarland, Saarbrücken, Germany


Given that the printer’s ink for the German-Wendish edition of the collective volume Five Centuries: The Wends and the Reformation was hardly dry, it is quite remarkable that an English edition is already available. One can be certain that this book will be read with interest in the English-speaking world since the footsteps of Lutheran Wends have made their imprint in Australia, the U.S., and in other parts of the world.

  - Jan Nuk, 10th Chairman of the Domowina (2000-2011), Budyšin, Łužica, (Bautzen, Lusatia), Germany


Thanks to this book … we have for the first time a study that surveys the 500 years of Wendish Lutheranism from the time of the Reformation to the present. Illustrations, strikingly beautiful, many in color, enhance this short but valuable study of how religion influenced an ethnic minority.

  - George Nielsen, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor Emeritus of History, Concordia University Chicago


Thank you for making this wonderful book available in an English translation. Australian Wends can now at last deepen their understanding of the Wendish heritage of their ancestors.

  - Lyall Kupke, President of the Wend/Sorb Society of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia


Years ago, while preparing a publication titled At Home in the House of My Fathers (CPH, 2011), I learned the inspiring story of Jan Killian and the Wends. The vibrant and faithful hearts of the Texas Wends in that story are rooted in the half millennia of Lutheran fidelity to Christ’s Gospel shared in this book. Kudos to those who give us a front row seat to a drama so compelling that it must continue to be discovered and re-told.

   - Matthew C. Harrison, S.T.M, D.D., L.L.D., President, The Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod


 


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