Thursday, November 22, 2007

The passing of my cHesed mentor....

I got word this morning that Mont W. Smith, family friend and retired professor from my alma mater, passed away this morning at 4:20. Dr. Smith's ground-breaking work on covenant has been pivotal in my life and ministry.

Thanks be to God--for giving Mont to us for a time, for Mont's bringing a timely remembrance of what cHesed means to the Church, and for taking Mont home in his good time and according to his steadfast cHesed--on this Thanksgiving Day.

I have been honored to call him my friend. His older brother, Jim, was my research project faculty director and I am honored that he is still my friend as well.

Please be in prayer for his family as they mourn his passing and prepare to remember his amazing life.


Brad said...

Peggy - so sorry for your loss. Knowing how central the theology of covenant has been to your thinking, and how core Mont W. Smith was to that theology, it is indeed a deep loss. Thankfully, the "epistle" of his work lives on both in book form and in human forms. Praying you, your family, and the Smith family will find peace and comfort in the midst of grief.

AbiSomeone said...

Thank you, always seem to know the right thing to say. I know that Mont's work will, indeed, live on. I am grateful to be part of that process.

a celtic son said...

Hullo-o-o Peggy,

the passing of a great Christian is a bitter-sweet experience - the bitter ours and theirs the sweet. My condolences to you on the passing of someone who clearly has been a significant influence in your life, I am part way through his book.

I read in "sessions" to accomodate the wide range of interests I have. On a shelf above my desk I have piles of books with labels which currently include; "Trinitarian theology," "Incarnational/Missional Church", "KingDom thinking," "Current studies" (presently mostly "leadership" texts) and "Slow burners" - though my labelling tends to be revised each January.

Some texts could fit in a couple of categories - Barth, Moltmann and Torrance for example could be in "Trinitarian theology" but are presently in "Slow-burners" which is where Covenant theology is too at present. These tend to be books I digest more slowly, because they are influential, even foundational, across the breadth of my other reading, so I need time to process them and get to grips with concepts before reading on.

So, one day I hope to get around to pitching my thoughts to you regarding cHesed... probably not for a while yet. I feel that I need to have a more complete comprehension of Mont Smith's book before discussing it with you, because it is clearly such a seminal concept in your thinking and I greatly respect that. Due diligence is required for discussing such foundational thinking.

Be blessed Abbess

a celtic son

Lori said...

Peggy, I'm sorry for your loss. I know it is hard to lose someone who has been a mentor. We lost our beloved mentor years ago, but we still mfeel the loss... I pray for God's perfect peace to be upon his family...

AbiSomeone said...

Thank you, Lori, for your prayers and encouragement... loss and grief are such challenges to our hearts, yet they are frequently doors to God's mercy.

Yes, CS, Mont's work is definitely the "slow burner" type. It took me quite a bit to "get it" and that was primarily because I came back to it in a time of great liminality and questioning exactly what it was that I believed and why I believed it. I got out some of my old college books...and got blown out of the water by cHesed!

That was 10 years ago, even though I was first introduced to Mont's book six years earlier! I remember it being interesting and helpful in was revolutionary in 1997!

Perhaps when I'm ready to process it a bit at a time here--kind of like Alan has done with TFW--life might be in a place for you where you'd be able to participate.

As with Brad's spell of movie quotes, this one rolls around frequently at our house: "It will all work out." "How?" "I don't know; it's a mystery."

Be blessed, all....

Tim Newton said...

Dr. Smith was a great influence on my life as well, both as an undergraduate and graduate student before his retirement.

I'd been curiously drawn the last couple of days to go through my Smith notebooks and find any news of him via Google. I've met some people lately who are asking questions wanting clarification of Biblical issues they've been confused about for years. I thought what better than to introduce them to materials Dr. Smith put together over the years. I've been typing them up on my computer so that I'll have them in digital form and can share them. I'm very interested in your CovenantClusters. Perhaps we're starting one and didn't know it. : )

Nov. 22nd, the same day CS Lewis passed away in 1963.

AbiSomeone said...

Hello, Tim...I'm happy to have helped you track him down! Very interesting about the date...I hadn't noticed that it was the 22nd particularly, I was thinking about Thanksgiving.

I would be very interested in the notes you've been preparing... and interested in the kinds of questions you've been fielding that you feel Dr. Smith's work answers.

Are you thinking about a new church plant when you wonder about CovenantClusters?