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I continue to ride the wave of change in my life in a spirit of deep gratitude and joy. God has been so very good to me and to my family. I enjoy my calling as a professor and relish my role as a classroom teacher. After a hiatus of several years I taught a newly revised Introduction to the Christian Faith again this year. I was glad to teach the very first course I taught when I arrived at Whitworth in 1989! But I also treasure leading and serving the department as chair, both of the undergrad program and of the master's program (which is thriving). I also had the privilege of chairing the search committee that landed Will Kynes. I don't think I have ever had a better experience on a search committee, and I have served on quite a number!
My new book, A Grace Revealed, was finally published last fall. A sequel to A Grace Disguised, it explores the theme of redemption as story. I am working hard to expand my knowledge of the history of the catechumenate, too. In fact, a journal just accepted a long article I wrote, "The Catechumenate and the Rise of Christianity," which argues that the formation of the catechumenate should be counted as one of the major reasons why Christianity thrived and triumphed in the ancient world.
Pat and I traveled this year as well. We spent two weeks in Bolivia, where we taught, counseled and encouraged career missionaries at a conference in Santa Cruz for five days, and then spent several days with Whitworth alums, both in Santa Cruz and in Cochabamba. I delivered the annual Scandrette lecture at Wheaton College, in March, where we again spent time with alums, and then spoke at a conference at Covenant Presbyterian Church, in Boise in April (more alums there, too).
Much has changed in the Sittser family. My sons, David and John, were married in in 2011 and 2012, respectively, as most of you read in last year's newsletter, and Catherine gave birth to dear Gideon in March 2012 (she is due again this October!). Now it is Pat's turn! Her youngest, Taylor, is getting married in August, her oldest, Morgan, in October. We will then have 10 kids (counting spouses, of course) all within seven years. David and Kelli live in Durham, N.C., John and Annalise, and Taylor and Mike live in Seattle, and Catherine and Jacob live in Portland, soon to be joined by Morgan (her fiancé, Brian, already lives there). Pat and I relish the time we get to spend with them.
God has been faithful to us. Yes, "the lines have fallen for us in pleasant places"; but the greatest gift of all is the good news of the gospel, offered freely through Jesus Christ.
God bless you all.
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