Particularly meaningful were the precious minutes I spent contemplating the liturgical artwork that once hung on the chancel wall of Concordia's "Chapel of the Upper Room," a space that was later "secularized" and purposed for other aims. This art, which now hangs in the relatively new (!) library, is by Ernst Schwidder (1931-1998), who graduated from Concordia (high school) in the same class as my dad, the class of '49. Later, Schwidder taught art at Valpo, where he also created many sculptures and other artworks that hang today in church buildings, hospitals, and other venues around the country. So I definitely share "a sense of place" with Schwidder, a fellow Pacific-Northwesterner who was transplanted to the Midwest for a season. (Like the artist, I hope to return to my native country when my vocation here comes to its end.)
|Liturgical art by Ernst Schwidder, which hung in the chancel of the Chapel of the Upper Room at Concordia Portland. These works now hang on the east wall of the new library, soon to be shuttered.|
While in Oregon I was able to celebrate the 117th birthday of Edmund Schlink, whose 830-page "Ecumenical Dogmatics" will be the second volume in the collected works that I am editing and co-translating. Co-celebrating with me on the eve of that occasion was my co-translator, Hans Spalteholz. I first met him forty years ago, when I was a freshman at Concordia. On that day, we both were late for chapel. A year or two later he introduced me to Schlink, whose writings have now become intimately linked to us both. Here we are four decades later, still working together, still running late, still modeling the NW-plaid style of shirts we both like to wear, still learning from the famous Heidelberger. I’m deeply grateful for Hans' friendship and mentoring through the years. By God's grace, we will keep on plugging along.
"Happy Birthday, Dr. Schlink!" "R. I. P., Concordia-Portland!"
|Taking a Break from Translating Schlink's "Ecumenical Dogmatics"|
|Checking a Definition in Cassell's|