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Fortieth ordination anniversary celebrated
1 March 2019
A number of ALC education staff—both current and emeritus—reunited with classmates this year to celebrate special anniversaries and reminisce about old times.
Emeritus lecturer, Dr Peter Lockwood, provides this account of his class reunion.
At our graduation from Luther Seminary in 1978 Dr Norm Habel gave the valedictory address, based on the words of our Lord, ‘See, I am sending you out like sheep into the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves’ (Matt 10:16). All fifteen members of our class were unsure that we could measure up either as wise serpents or innocent doves; and our trepidation wasn’t allayed by Dr Les Grope of blessed memory, then LCA General President, as he handed us our first assignment, with the words: ‘I have a challenge for you’. We were all sent to vacant parishes so plum that seasoned pastors had resisted the temptation to snap them up greedily.
In mid-February, forty years since our graduation and ordination, the four members of our class now living in Adelaide—Rodger Russ, Steen Olsen, Stephen Haar and Peter Lockwood—decided to meet and reminisce. It was pure joy to hear that we would be joined by Andrew Jaensch, ALC faculty member in Queensland, and Neal Nuske, now retired after twenty years as chaplain and study of religion teacher at St Peter’s College, Indooroopilly. Our partners in life, Ruth (Steen), Jan (Stephen), Helen (Peter) and Jan (Neal) were a lively part of the conversation.
Our memories revolved largely around the theme of the high-quality theological education that we were privileged to enjoy from such luminaries as Drs Siegfried Hebart, Erich Renner, Vic Pfitzner, Maurice Schild and Henry Hamann back in the day. Immersed in the study of theology for seven years, we were encouraged to read widely, think deeply, and reflect expansively, so that, they hoped, the living voice of the gospel would always inform our pastoral practice.
The other members of our group (unable to join us for the reunion) are: John and Jennifer Keller, Michael and Jill Heinrich, Paul and Joan Semmler, Maurie and Annie Richter, Gordon and Jenni Wegener, Tom and Flossie Peitsch, Ken and Danuta Jaworski, Fred and Rose Veerhuis, and Taisto Salmela (deceased) and Marja-Leena.
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