Dear Bob, here are some photos of my life here on the campus of Concordia Seminary. I love kids, working with the grounds crew, swimming, playing with my dog friends, and especially my own family people.
The seminary's Luther Tower is one of the most photographed areas on campus and has been for decades. But our fairly new web designer/photographer, Mark Polege, took one of the best I've ever seen the other evening.
Every detail comes through from the stone work to each light.
Just about a year ago I posted, "as we were sitting outside in the late afternoon, Dale looked around and then asked, "What happened to the Adirondeck loveseat?" It had been in the back of the yard by the water feature and sure enough, it was gone. Stolen. Who steals a rather heavy chair and is able to haul it off from an awkward area with no road for a getaway? It would have to have taken two people. This was really depressing."
We really felt creepy after that, wondering often what will be taken next. And we liked that double chair. But guess what?
It's baaaaaaack! Our campus security guys stopped a couple of suspicious characters wandering around the campus Friday night. They had parked a car by the chapel and then began that slow walk towards our married students apartments. One of our new, incoming students had just moved in when his new lawn chair was taken. So our security guys were not going to let these guys just walk around. Told them to get back in the car and don't come back or the police will be next. They took off, but not before our security got to thinking that they'd seen them before and remembered them walking toward a wooded, overgrown area behind the Fontbonne parking lot. They took a walk through and lo and behold, in a well hidden underbrush was a hideout of sorts. In that hideout was the new lawn chair, a desk chair and our double Adirondack chair. It was a spot no one would see if they weren't looking. It was a hideout for drug doing or beer drinking.
Fontbonne and the seminary share a border on our north side so our security got in touch with their security and now everyone will be looking out for these guys. And the police. But yay for our guys! They went and hauled our chair out and brought it home. Also got the lawn chair back to our student. No one knows anything about the desk chair.
The arms have some interesting carvings on them now, but we can fix that up I think.
Every Alumni week there is a morning set aside for Dale and I to do presentations to the former students and families who attend. Yesterday we each did a powerpoint, Dale's on the current state of the seminary and mine on campus women and landscape. It's always fun.
We currently have an large number of amazingly talented and hardworking women on our seminary staff. I can't even find words to describe how they have enriched the seminary day by day. Our social media-Facebook, Twitter, etc are updated constantly and even to the minute of things that are happening. The executive staff, creative services, advancement, technology, accounting, registrar, recruiting and on and on functioning at a high level because of the women here. Some days I just shake my head in wonder at the things they come up with and pull off. They even jump in to do some hard labor when needed.
Creative services, advancement, campus services. Some on vacation yesterday.
President's office and executive wing
Technology, we have two women providing technology including video, the other on vacation.
Campus store coordinator/continuing education
And there were offices I didn't get to with more and more people doing fantastic jobs.
And this was yesterday, out in the hot sun, setting up tables for the alumni reunion picnic held last night. Far far beyond what they needed to do, but done so cheerfully.
These are the people who got us through Call Day, Graduation, publication deadlines, alumni gatherings, outside groups who came through, and have lead the way on the right way to use social media.
This was a rather difficult/scattered/odd past week. Ferdie has a bad infection on his left neck and cheek which just won't heal. Leaving the Vet, he crashed into the seat of the car, fell back out and re-injured his right front shoulder. Doctoring him while Dale has been out of town.
Before leaving town, Dale spent an overnight at the SLU sleep center to have a sleep test.
One of our students suffered a terrible loss.
Our refrigerator here at the sem house developed a leak.
We hosted a barbque in our yard one night.
We had electricians putting in new electric outlets and lights on and in the garage in Collinsville.
All in all a weird week, some good, some annoying some bad. The flowers look fantastic, the food at our barbque was great and the company was lots of fun. And, the teenage ducks seem to be thriving.
For the second year in a row, a number of Concordia Seminary students are going to Israel for an in depth study of Biblical history. Under the leadership of Pastor Tom Zelt of Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Fremont California, who has been to Israel over 25 times, the primary goals of the course is to study the Bible within the context of the geography of the Holy Land and to develop new preaching and teaching skills based on their experiences. One of last year's students wrote: "This class and tour has been one of the most formative experiences in my seminary education. I read, reflect on, and teach the Bible in a whole new way."
I was able to catch them for a group picture early this morning as they loaded up for the airport.
They began with a prayer.
Oddly our two campus ducks decided to walk up and say good-bye. This was a very unusual ocurrence, these ducks normally give us a wide birth.