End of 2020 academic year celebrated
On Friday 13 November, ALC celebrated the end of the 2020 academic year. Staff, students and a small number of family members (limited due to COVID-19 restrictions) gathered on campus for an intimate valedictory service, which was live-streamed for the benefit of those unable to attend in person. Social distancing measures meant a change of venue from the chapel to the former refectory was required, but thankfully, restrictions did not prevent those present from lifting their voices in song.
The valedictory address entitled ‘God’s gifted leavers’ was delivered by Dr Andrew Pfeiffer, who encouraged those leaving to trust that God would continue to walk with them in their life journey.
‘I encourage you to trust that for the sake of Jesus Christ you have a merciful God. I encourage you to pray and confidently expect his help in your calling, especially when it is difficult.
You are gifted. You are gifted differently. You are gifted to serve others. And as you do, your gracious and loving God offers to serve you. You are indeed God’s gifted leavers.’
Following the address, students deemed to have successfully fulfilled the vocational requirements of their study were presented with certificates by the Principal, James Winderlich.
The ALC Board’s Service to Theological Education Award was then announced by Board Chair, Associate Professor Kristine Gebbie, and presented to Mrs Eila Chambers who has served the College’s pastoral students for over 20 years, crafting high quality vestments for use in worship.
Earlier in the year, Dr Pfeiffer was honoured with a Doctor of Divinity honoris causa by Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne. The ALC community took the opportunity as part of this gathering to again congratulate Dr Pfeiffer, acknowledging his long and faithful service and outstanding contribution to the Lutheran Church of Australia.
In closing, Principal Winderlich acknowledged the extraordinary efforts of both staff and students throughout what has been a challenging and uncertain year. A rite of farewell was then conducted for those leaving the ALC community—many of whom will now go on to fulfil their callings as teachers, pastors and lay workers in the LCANZ’s various schools and congregations.