In case you missed it, we are now officially in the lead-up to the 500th anniversary of the modern Western world.

On October 31, 1517, Martin Luther, a German theologian, sent an academic paper to the Archbishop of Mainz, possibly by nailing it to church door in Wittenberg, although that's now doubted. The subject of the paper was the sale of "indulgences" by the Catholic Church, which had preoccupied Luther for some years. The document, and the issue it discussed, is commonly seen as the beginning of the Reformation. Ceremonies in Europe recently commenced to mark the 500th anniversary over the coming 11 months -- including with the current Pope.