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This Is Still a Good Friday - Remembering Dr. Francis Monseth

Written By Wade Mobley on 03/29/2013 | Posted in AFLC NewsDaily Christian Living

A Good Friday?

As a child I struggled with calling this Friday "good." I get it now.

But today it is being tested again. Dr. Fran Monseth, long time dean of the Association Free Lutheran Theological Seminary, died today after a massive heart attack. He was 71, and the picture of good health by my recollections. He leaves behind his wife, Ellen, six children (best known in our congregation is Rhoda Jore), a ton of grandchildren, and an indelible stamp upon an entire Association.

I met Dr. Monseth upon enrollment at our Bible School, AFLBS, in 1995. While I was four years older (I went to college first), I attended AFLBS with Dr. Monseth's son, Ben. We became good friends. Later, I would travel on a summer team with Dr. Monseth's youngest child, Rhoda, who is now married to Nate Jore and serving with AFLC World Missions in Uganda.

These relationships afforded me the opportunity to observe Dr. Monseth in his natural habitat- not the study of the seminary office, where he did apt and able work- but in his home with his family. He was a loving father and doding grandfather. He honored his wife. He was patient.

I recall this the most: He was patient. When I get busy, I get irritable. He did not. I'm sure he did, but I never saw it. He was one of the busiest people I know, but he never seemed busy. He mentored me all through seminary, introducing me to great works like "The Measure of a Man" by Gene Getz, and asking me difficult questions that I still have the deacons ask me every month.

A Man of Christlike Humility

Which leads me to what I'm about to say- and it is too soon to say it: Yes, Dr. Monseth is in the presence of Christ, no more looking as through a mirror dimly. Yes, we grieve, but not as those who have no hope. Yes, God is sovereign over all things. Yes, we are all replaceable. But I want to say this about seminary deans.

Seminary Deans are probably the most important people in any denomination/affiliation/association, for they steer the academic content and instruct the teachers of that content. It is the seminary, thus equipped, that teaches future leaders of congregations. And, in denominations where unbiblical drift has taken place, you need only look to the Seminaries. So we pray.

I want you to know this: There are men with degrees, and there are wise men, who love Jesus and teach others His Word. There are organizers and administrators. And to some extent, Dr. Monseth was some of all of this.

But Dr. Monseth was a man of Christlike humility.

We simply don't have enough of those.

He Is Risen, Indeed!
Pastor Wade

You Have Been Raised

You have been raised the tomb has been opened
Nothing can take away our hope in You
You have been raised
You have been raised the work is completed
Hell and its powers have been defeated
You have been raised

-Bob Kauflin, Ken Boer, Mark Altrogge

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Thankful to the Living God for life, redemption and His many blessings. Doing my best to reflect His character in all I do.

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