Huf, Lorenz (d. ca. 1560)
Lorenz Huf was an Anabaptist of Sprendlingen in Rheinhessen, a member of the Kreuznach congregation "who are called Swiss." "He was evidently an elder, and as such he, with Rupp Gellner, Matthes Stroh, and Wilhelm Henchen, was offended by the doctrine and conduct in his congregation." "Although they have learned that a believer should sacrifice himself with all that he has to God and His saints, they have contrary to their own teaching granted in life that each man use his goods for himself and give to the poor only what they need. Besides they have taught concerning the brotherhood that no one should have property, but what one has should be held in common, his neighbor's as well as his own. And, at the same time, when anyone needed anything, he had to buy it of others. In the third place, concerning original sin, that they do not teach the right according to the truth, pay taxes for war and sacrifice to idols, do not earnestly rebuke unclean dealing in business and wrongdoing, but rebuke privately so that it does not become known among the populace. Nor do they have true separation from the people, but in many respects mingle with them."
The demand for complete community of goods is foreign to the Swiss congregations; it is Hutterite. On the other hand, the question of strict church discipline and separation not rarely gave occasion to disunity and strife. An extensive account is given of the manner in which dissatisfied members joined the Hutterian Brethren. When one of them, Thoman Neumann, a cobbler of Wolfsheim, a village not far from Sprendlingen, heard that "there is a group in Moravia that lives in brotherly unity and true fellowship, he made up his mind not to give up until he came to the church of God in Moravia, learned the foundation of the truth and offered it again to his friends." This led to thorough and repeated discussions among them. They finally agreed to ask Hans Schmidt, a missionary of the Hutterian Brethren who was traveling in Hesse, to come to talk the matter over with him. He presented to them the creed of the Hutterian brotherhood, concerning the call of their preachers, their offices, brotherhood, church regulations, marriage, and separation from the world. On several points, viz., marriage, taxes, separation, the food and drink of the preachers, sacrifice to idols, and why one should immigrate to Moravia, they asked more information, and Lorenz Huf was commissioned with other judicious brethren to carry on the above points. When this reply came, they met, discussed it point by point, and found themselves in agreement with it. This was reported to Moravia, and the union was agreed upon on 26 November 1556, with Hans Schmidt. "Then they moved in to the church of God," and Lorenz Huf was made their preacher. He died four years later at Stiegnitz. He is the author of the hymn, "Lugt auf, ihr Christen alle," which has 20 stanzas with the acrostic, "Lorenz Huf von Sprendeling."
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols.. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe; Schneider, 1913-1967: II, 363.
Wolkan, Rudolf. Geschicht-Buch der Hutterischen Brüder. Macleod, AB, and Vienna, 1923: 272, 273-277.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 835. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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MLA style: Neff, Christian. "Huf, Lorenz (d. ca. 1560)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 24 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/huf_lorenz_16th_century.
APA style: Neff, Christian. (1956). Huf, Lorenz (d. ca. 1560). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 24 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/huf_lorenz_16th_century.