Today's post will be similar to what I blogged a few years ago. What I said then were my memories and perspective of Rev. Harrison. Here I will add my new memories from the past few years.
Rev. Harrison was my pastor from 1996-2001 and his oldest son was in my first grade class at Zion Lutheran Academy, Fort Wayne. When you are a teacher at a dayschool, you see the pastor in all kinds of settings, maybe even more than the the other members of the congregation. He was truly concerned about our Academy not only surviving in inner city Fort Wayne, but also that it would succeed beyond expectations and that it would remain a strong LCMS school. He (along with our headmaster) made daily chapel a priority. The students learned about the church year, hymns and liturgy and much more in this daily chapel. Rev. Harrison could have easily given all the responsibility for the teachers and Academy to our headmaster. But Rev. Harrison found time in his busy schedule to often participate in faculty meetings and do other things at the school.
Pastor Harrison had excellent sermons and Bible studies. I remember once during a Bible study about Lazarus, he actually laid down on the table and "acted out" the Bible study. It stuck with me and that was years ago!
Rev. Harrison did an excellent job all over the world at LCMS World Relief for about 10 years. I really appreciated A Little Book on Joy.
After Rev. Harrison was elected Synodical President, I was able to see him several times in his first year as President while we still lived in MN. Since we moved to ID I have not seen him. I went to one of his first conferences he held after being elected, that was in Fargo, ND. I was so impressed with his Witness Mercy and Life Together plan after hearing about it there.
Ram and I attended the pastor/spouse session of Doxology in St. Louis in August 2011. Rev. Harrison asked his entire staff at the Synodical office to attend this Doxology session. It was so neat to have time over the weekend to talk to Rev. Harrison, his wife, and his staff. It was clear from talking to them that Rev. Harrison and his staff were working very hard to implement all the changes that were passed at the last convention. His staff was working so hard to do this with a small staff, account for money spent, and spend money wisely. Their real goal was to find money to send more missionaries and give more money to the Seminaries.
I was very impressed with Rev. Harrison's speaking at the Congressional Hearing and his stand for life. I was proud to be a member of LCMS by what he said there.
I did not attend our last District convention, but Ram did. He was impressed with Rev. Harrison's answers to some tough questions from our district, especially questions about LCMS youth and questions about Holy Communion. Some times his answer to questions was that it isn't about what he personally thinks or feels, his answer has to be what the Bible says about that issue.
Vote for Harrison part 3, which will be the final part, will be posted tomorrow.