We hope and pray that you and yours are well, physically and spiritually. As First Article people, we trust our Creator is merciful and pray that He will preserve our bodily health. “As a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him. For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust” (Ps. 103:13-14 ESV). As Second and Third Article believers, we rely whole-heartily upon the Spirit of God to sustain and grow us in Jesus Christ until the day when He “will raise me and all the dead, and give eternal life to me and all believers in Christ.”
Here our Lord’s mission continues, albeit in unprecedented ways. The Seminary is located in St. Louis County. The county, St. Louis City and the state of Illinois have imposed “stay at home” orders that have drastically changed how we pursue our mission. All classes are now online. All meetings are online. Students are either staying on campus or are back in their homes of origin. A virtual Call Day service will be held April 28. A skeleton crew of workers is on campus to support e-learning and our physical and financial infrastructures. More changes will come as our leadership team continues to monitor health guidelines and government orders. I invite you to follow developments on our website.
Through all of this we are grateful for many things. We are grateful to all who have supported us through the years because, under God’s grace, the Seminary is in a strong position to take the shocks of this pandemic. We are grateful for our faculty, staff and administrators who are showing goodwill and excellent cooperation in coping with all the changes forced upon us. We are grateful for our students. They are disappointed that the closeness of campus life must be gone for a season but, digital natives that they are, they are strengthening the ties that bind in new ways, ways that will be used in their coming ministries. Above all, our humble gratitude is to our God and Lord. We on campus have been very intentional about coping with this crisis with explicit trust and confidence in the goodness of God given to us in all His promises centered in Jesus Christ. That’s the way you’re facing this crisis too.
In closing, I’m finding great solace and guidance in our Lutheran hymnody.
Are big with mercy and shall break / In blessings on your head.
Deep in unfathomable mines / Of never-failing skill
He treasures up His bright designs / And works His sov’reign will.
Judge not the Lord by feeble sense, / But trust Him for His grace;
Behind a frowning providence / He hides a smiling face.
(The Lutheran Hymnal, 514:3, 2, 4)
Heavenly Father, we call upon You in our perplexity and need. We pray that You will give wisdom to all in this crisis. For the medical community, we ask Your abundant mercies upon their care for the sick who are stricken by this disease. For scientific researchers, we beg You to give insights that lead to discoveries in research that will mitigate this crisis. For our governmental leaders, we pray for reasoned and persuasive presentations so that the general public will act with calm discipline for the welfare of all. For those whose employment is curtailed or eliminated, we pray for their aid through efficient governmental and faith agencies for help. For our congregations and all the people of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS), we pray Your Spirit will give the reassurance that our holy faith offers through Your Word and the ministry of the church. May we all lift up our eyes to the hills, knowing that our help ultimately comes from You. And for us, the faculty, staff and students of Concordia Seminary, we pray growth in humble and dependent faith, patience in this tribulation, and hope and confidence because of all Your promises centered in our living Lord Jesus Christ. In His saving Name we pray. Amen.
Dr. Dale A. Meyer, President
Concordia Seminary, St. Louis