Clarifying, “ecclesia reformata, semper reformanda”


The post-World War II Latin phrase, “ecclesia reformata, semper reformanda secundum verbum Dei” (i.e., the church reformed, always reforming according to the Word of God), “does not mean that the life of the Church needs to be in a state of perpetual revolution in which every aspect of faith and practice has to be continuously re-examined and thought out afresh. What it does mean is that visible churches are liable to error and that when they do err, they need to be reformed in line with biblical teaching (reformanda secundum verbum Dei, as the final words of the full version of the phrase put it).”

Martin Davie, Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi: Liturgy, Doctrine and Scripture in History and Today, 2.