Saturday, October 9, 2010

Half Way Through

On the last day of September I emailed my final paper for this summer's term at Nashotah House. The total number of pages of writing between the two classes came to around 80 pages. 56 of those were finished and then edited by my dear wife in that last week of September. I knew that pursuing this degree would present a needed and welcomed academic challenge, yet the sheer volume of writing still surprised me. Nevertheless, with the one transfer course from Ft. Wayne, and assuming I scored sufficient grades on these two classes, I am now officially half-way through the course work for my STM. The final two papers, by the way, were: "Romans 7: Personal Struggle, Defense of the Law, or Israel's Struggle," which was an exegetical paper for a course on the New Perspective of Paul (where I defended Luther's interpretation of Romans 7 against the New Perspective interpretation), and "Anglican and Lutheran Worship: Contributions, Contrasts, and Comparisons." The last of these was written for a course taught by the precentor and vice-dean of Norwich Cathedral, the Rev. Canon Jeremy Haselock. The longest of the two, it ended on page 41 with over a hundred footnotes. The research for this paper revealed a fascinating liturgical exchange between these two traditions dating back to the very beginning of the Church of England. The final third section of the project offered a point-by-point comparison between Common Worship, the Church of England's most recent worship book (2000-2008), and our Lutheran Service Book (2007). The comparison was limited to the Eucharistic liturgy, using Divine Service, Setting One for the Lutheran contribution. All in all, despite the labor involved, I must admit that I enjoyed the challenge and learned a great deal.

This January I am tentatively planning on taking another course from Dr. Garwood Anderson on Romans. My selections for exegetical courses is rather limited this summer, and with the time already invested in a great deal of work on Romans, it seems like a logical choice. Anyway, my chosen concentration for the degree is Biblical Exposition. In turn, I am looking at another liturgics class in the summer, this one taught by the well known Lutheran liturgical scholar Dr. Philip H. Pfatteicher. The course will examine the Church's calendar and sounds quite interesting.

For now, however, I am relaxing and enjoying a brief reprieve. I picked up Matt Harrison's book At Home in the House of My Fathers at a pastor's conference this past week and am looking forward to some non-assigned reading. After spending so much time with the Anglicans I now need to spend some quality time in the house of my own fathers!

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