Concordia Historical Institute (CHI) presented “Awards of Commendation” to 22 historians Nov. 8 for exemplary accomplishment in the field of American Lutheran history during 2011. The awards were in the categories of “Journal Articles,” “Major Publications,” “Organizational Histories,” “Congregational Histories” and “Non-print Media.”
The Rev. Daniel Preus, LCMS fourth vice-president and former director of CHI, was speaker for the 2012 CHI annual awards banquet at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, where the institute’s offices, archives and special-exhibit areas are located. CHI is the Department of Archives and History for the Synod.
In his presentation, Preus honored this year’s awardees, saying their writings “teach the Church about her life and faith,” and because of that, he sees the awards banquet as “such a positive event for the Church.”
The Rev. Dr. Lawrence R. Rast Jr., president of Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind., received the Distinguished Service Award for his dedication to Lutheran history, especially that of the Missouri Synod and CHI. Rast joined the seminary’s Department of Historical Theology in 1996.
Some 85 people attended the awards banquet.
In alphabetical order (by last name of first author listed for publications with multiple authors), the past year’s CHI honorees are:
- Russell P. Baldner, Spillville, Iowa, (Journal Articles) for “Brothers Jungck: An Odyssey in Lutheran Synodical Affiliation and Ordination History,” Concordia Historical Quarterly, Volume 84, Number 2, Summer 2011 — the story of two brothers, both pastors, but in different Lutheran synods in 19th century America.
- Bethlehem Evangelical Lutheran Church, Altamont, Ill., (Congregational Histories) for To The Glory of God and the Salvation of Men (1861-2011) — a recounting of the congregation’s first 150 years.
- The Rev. Dr. Gerhard H. Bode Jr., Glencoe, Mo., for “Man on a Mission: Henry Melchior Muhlenberg (1711-1787) and the Lutherans in America,” Concordia Historical Institute Quarterly, Volume 84, Number 2, Summer 2011 (Journal Articles) — a succinct history of the man who has been called the “Patriarch of American Lutheranism.”
- The Rev. Dr. Jack D. Ferguson, Hawks, Mich., for “Underlying Causes and Unexpected Results: C.F.W. Walther’s Theological Perspective on the Christian Congregation: Parts 1 and 2,” Concordia Historical Institute Quarterly, Volume 83, Number 4, Winter 2010-2011 and Volume 84, Number 1, Spring 2011 (Journal Articles) — a two-part article in which the author theorizes “that specific events and particular factors in C.F.W. Walther’s life influenced his theology of the Church, especially as it pertains to the local congregation.”
- The Rev. Dr. Carl C. Fickenscher II, Fort Wayne, for “The Preaching of C.F.W. Walther,” Concordia Pulpit Resources, Volume 21, Parts 1-4 (Journal Articles) — a series of articles in commemoration of the 200th anniversary of C.F.W. Walther in 2011, which quote from Walther’s sermons to show he was a classic preacher of Law and Gospel.
- Dr. Peter T. Harstad, Lakeville, Minn., and Karyn E. Lukasek, Green Isles, Minn., for Store Per (Major Publication) — a story about Norwegian Lutherans in the New Land (America), their struggles, their perseverance and their faith.
- The Rev. David Herald, Appleton City, Mo., for “Paul Henkel’s View of American Religion as Seen through His Catechisms,” Concordia Historical Institute Quarterly, Volume 83, Number 4, Winter 2010-2011 (Journal Articles) — a reflection on the life, times and catechetical work of Paul Henkel, an early American pioneer preacher who sought to revive and promote a solidly Lutheran distinctiveness in early 19th century America.
- Kevin Hildebrand, Fort Wayne, for “Friedrich Lochner and Der Hauptgottesdienst,” Concordia Historical Institute Quarterly, Volume 84, Number 4, Winter 2011-2012 (Journal Articles) — a study of Lochner as a leading authority in liturgical theology and practice in the early years of the Missouri Synod, whose work still instructs the church today in its understanding of the Divine Service — der Hauptgottesdienst.
- John Klinger, St. Louis, and Dale Ward, St. Louis, for “Walther” (Non-print Media) — a four-DVD set telling the life of Walther which includes a feature film, commentary and other media and print resources, produced on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of Walther’s birth.
- Dr. Thomas Korcok, Niagara University, N.Y., for Lutheran Education: From Wittenberg to the Future (Major Publications) — recounts the beginning of education from the Ancients up through the development of the educational system in Germany and details the advancement and development of education through the Synod as influenced by Luther and LCMS forefathers.
- The Rev. Dr. Cameron A. MacKenzie, Fort Wayne, for “C.F.W. Walther’s Use of Luther,” Concordia Theological Quarterly, Volume 75, Numbers 3-4, July/October 2011 (Journal Article) — a study of two heroes of the faith, Martin Luther and C.F.W. Walther, through an investigation of Walther’s regard for, and attitude toward, Luther.
- Dr. Ryan C. MacPherson, Mankato, Minn.; Paul G. Madson, North Mankato, Minn.; and Peter M. Anthony, Fairbanks, Alaska.; for Telling the Next Generation: The Evangelical Lutheran Synod’s Vision for Christian Education, 1918-2011 (Major Publications) — an anthology addressing critical issues concerning Christian education within the Evangelical Lutheran Synod (ELS), past and present, with the goal of continuing to promote and encourage the ELS in establishing and maintaining Christian schools.
- Marlys Taege Moberg, Milwaukee; Lauren Beale, Waukesha, Wis.; and Janice Kerper Brauer, Wheaton, Ill.; for God Gave the Increase (Organizational Histories) — a history of the impact of Lutheran Women’s Missionary League mission grants in numerous countries of Europe, Africa and Asia and the stories of grant recipients who benefitted from those funds.
- The Rev. Dr. Martin R. Noland, Newburgh, Ind., for “Walther and the Revival of Confessional Lutheranism,” Concordia Theological Quarterly, Volume 75, Numbers 3-4, July/October 2011 (Journal Articles) — an article on the history and challenges of confessional Lutheranism and the contributions of C.F.W. Walther to confessional Lutheranism in America.
- The Rev. John Pless, Fort Wayne, for “Wilhelm Loehe: His Voice Still Heard in Walther’s Church,” Concordia Theological Quarterly, Volume 75, Numbers 3-4, July/October 2011 (Journal Articles) — explores Loehe’s ongoing influence in the Missouri Synod, despite his having left the Missouri Synod in 1853. Pless sees Loehe’s influence in a growing emphasis on frequent reception of the Lord’s Supper (“sacramental Lutheranism”), in some elements of the Synod’s latest liturgical directions, and in encouraging the service of deaconesses.
- St. Paul Lutheran Church, Westlake, Ohio, for The Story of St. Paul Lutheran Church, Westlake, Ohio, 1858-2008 (Congregational Histories) — a history of how this rural congregation with a small number of members in the beginning, gradually grew to be one of the largest parishes in the Cleveland area by the time of its 150th anniversary.
The institute is accepting nominations for historical work completed in 2012, for recognition at next year’s awards ceremony. To download an awards nomination form, visit CHI’s website at http://lutheranhistory.org. Nominations are due by Jan. 31.
Posted Dec. 5, 2012