Friedrich Rittelmeyer (1872–1938) was a Lutheran German minister, theologian, and the principal founder and first leader of The Christian Community. He came to prominence in the early 20th century as a leading academic liberal theologian and priest in Germany and wrote several books that advocated for a socially engaged "Christianity of deeds" (Tatchristentum). During World War I, he became one of the most high-profile clergy in Germany to publicly oppose the war. From the 1910s, his thinking was gradually influenced by Rudolf Steiner, and in 1922 a group of mainly Lutheran priests and theology students led by Rittelmeyer founded The Christian Community as an ecumenically oriented Christian community inspired by Steiner's writings. The Christian Community is primarily a liturgical community with a loose creed that rejects Christian dogmas. Rittelmeyer saw it as a continuation of the liberal Christian tradition of which he was the foremost representative in Germany in the early 20th century.