Sunday, February 1, 2009

He is Gone

We received news last night that Pastor Martin Ringstrom has gone out of this life.

I am not surprised, but I am saddened by the news. I saw him just last Sunday. Kris helped him get a church bulletin for Charles Christensen. He looked and sounded healthy and strong.

I can't say that I knew him well, but I did admire him. I admired his piety - though I cannot emulate it. I admired his commitment to the church, his "churchmanship." I admired the way he stayed related to his extended family even while he stayed connected to that part of the family that had joined the saints in light.

Because of Martin we stopped in Wahoo, NE to see the ruins of Luther College. The photo in the upper left corner of this post is the Luther Science building as it looked last summer. Because of Martin (at least in part) there is a video of Augustana Synod memories. Because of Martin I look toward my future with considerably less dread. I see in his life the possibility of living to a great age with dignity and even pleasure in one's old age.

Martin Ringstrom is gone and I am saddened by his passing, but I am glad that I had the opportunity to know him. Later this week I'll publish the interviews I made with Martin last spring, in anticipation of the Augustana Heritage Society Gathering VI.

1 comment:

Juliana said...

I too am sad. I got the call saturday morning about 830am. His daughter called Inga-Lill, who then called me. By 930, with help, all the Swedish Friendship Group had been notified. I know that Martin was ready, but WE were not ready. We were not ready. He will be greatly missed..........his sweet smile, his sly little jokes, his knowledge. The world is not the same without him in it.