Kempe, Stephan

Kempe, Stephan one of the leaders in the German Reformation of the 16th century, the founder of Protestantism in the city of Hamburg, his native place, was born towards the close of the 15th century. He was educated at Rostock, and became a Franciscan monk in 1523; but, while on business for his order at Hamburg, he became acquainted with. the reformer Joachim Sliiter, and soon was himself one of the most enthusiastic preachers of the new religion. To Kempe belongs the glory, indeed, of the evangelization of Hamburg. One of his ablest assistants in the glorious work was Ziegenhagen (q.v.). In 1528 they had so far gained the upper hand that the Roman Catholics were obliged. to leave the city altogether in their hands. In Luneburg, also, Kempe aided the good cause of the Lutherans; in fact, wherever, in the immediate neighborhood of the Hanse cities, his assistance was needed to further the reformatory movement, it had not to be asked for twice. ,He died at Hamburg October 23, 1540. He wrote a narrative of the Reformation in Hamburg which was published by Mayer in Das Evangelische Hamburg (Hamburg, 1693, 12mo).

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