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Fall 2002 | Volume 25, Number 4 | Letters to The Editor

Letters to the Editor

We were happily stunned by the dramatic appearance of the new Response [Summer 2002] in all its colorful splendor, which makes its always significant articles and features even more “alive.” The cover story by Eugene Peterson of how he got into the huge task of translating the Scriptures is very revealing and powerful, and the back cover painting by Mike Caldwell is a marvelous beginning to an ongoing feature of great significance. Many thanks, and “do not grow weary” in the outstanding work you are doing to inform all of us who cherish SPU about the people, traditions, ideas and goals of the institution.

Leon Arksey
Professor Emeritus of English, SPU
Spokane, Wash.

I just received the Summer 2002 Response last night. My immediate reaction was to say “wow!” Now, after having read the entire issue, I’m even more inclined to say “WOW!” This issue represents a huge change from the old Response, and one that I think has been long overdue. … I can’t remember the last time I was so proud of SPU and all of the hard work that goes on by the students, faculty and staff. You’ve taken Response to a whole new level — one that is fitting of the SPU tradition and culture. I know you’re out to change the world, but if — with the work you’ve done — you can change the attitude and nature of others in the same way you have with me, I think you folks have made a change that will truly bear bountiful fruit. I can’t wait for the next issue to come out.

Bruce A. Bergman ’85
San Diego, Calif.

I must congratulate you on the new look of Response. I must admit this is the first time I have read it from cover to cover. I am thrilled with the magazine. Thank you. I also bought The Message as a result of the article. Wow!! Talk about God to man. Keep up the good work. I am proud to be an alumna of SPU.

Karen Lewis ’95
Coupeville, Wash.

I just got my Summer Response today, and it’s great! Thanks for all the hard work. I really like the new design. As a result I have actually read a bit more of the magazine than I might ordinarily read. And it led me to the Web site. In fact, I thought Eugene Peterson’s article was so good that I posted the address of it to some friends.

Judy Kropf Estabrook ’74
High Wycombe, England

Knowing the reputation for awardwinning excellence that Editor Jennifer Johnson Gilnett and her staff have built over the years with Response in a tabloid format, I was not at all surprised to see what a fine job was done on the first issue of Response as a magazine. It is attractive, inviting, and a great reflection on my alma mater. As a communications graduate of Seattle Pacific who has worked in both secular and Christian media for 25 years, I take great interest in the ways that Christian organizations and ministries convey their values to the larger public. SPU is doing it the right way through its new magazine. Thanks for making this timely change, and keep up the good work.

John Fortmeyer ’77
Publisher, Christian News Northwest
Portland, Ore.

I really enjoyed/am enjoying the Summer issue of Response. Very, very nice. I am proud of you guys! It makes me glad to be an alumnus of SPC/SPU. … I especially liked the article on Eugene Peterson and The Message project. I have been using that translation for some time.

Leon Strunk ’49
Asheville, N.C.

I felt strongly that I should e-mail you to let you know what a fabulous job you and your Response staff have done with the Response. I always enjoy reading it, but it was even more pleasurable in its new format! I love it!!! It’s easy to read, very colorful … the photographs were very clear and compelling, and the articles were well-written. I especially enjoyed the piece on Eugene Peterson. I simply wanted to rave about the change.

Angela D. Olson ’95
Olympia, Wash.

Thank you for such a great “makeover.” It looks great, and the articles seem more involving. I read it from cover to cover.

Shirley Quiring O’Brien ’58
Tucson, Ariz.

I just wanted to let you know that I was pleasantly surprised by the new Response design. It’s beautiful! My kudos to you, [designer] Joel Ertsgaard and the rest of your writing staff. You mentioned somewhere in Response that the new design was risky and you wanted to hear some feedback. I think it was worth the risk. The new layout fits nicely on the coffee table with all my other magazines. That means I will keep it around months longer than the old layout. It’s also a more user-friendly layout. I can now read a few articles, set it down and then pick it up later and read a few more. The old layout was such a large size that I usually only looked at it once and then didn’t pick it up again. I also love the many four-color photos. I ’m looking forward to seeing the new artwork on the back cover every issue. But most importantly, it gave me a sense of pride in SPU! After all, isn’t that what it’s all about?

Lynn Barrett Anselmi ’88
Kirkland, Wash.

The “new” Response is extremely wellput- together. Congratulations! Very nicely laid-out plus substantive content. I was particularly fascinated by Eugene Peterson’s explanation of how he got into putting The Message together. will read it with different eyes now that know about the “Holy Ghost” words. Keep up your good work of challenging and educating us!

Jan Gill Thornton ’63
La Crescenta, Calif.

If It’s Tuesday, It’s Nightwatch

You are too modest to mention in “One Tuesday Night” [Summer 2002] that the SPU Response team will volunteer at Operation Nightwatch one night this month. Way to go! And just to clear up any misconceptions: Nightwatch has great staff and volunteers to keep the place running. I’m hardly needed anymore!

Rick Reynolds ’76
Director, Operation Nightwatch
Seattle, Wash.

I was so encouraged by the article “One Tuesday Night” in your latest publication! I have just returned from the Los Angeles Urban Project, a six-week summer mission where I learned about God’s thirst for justice and heart for the poor. I was disturbed as I thought about how rarely, if ever, this truth about God is taught and lived out by Christians in the United States. Rick Reynolds’ story, in combination with the excellent photos, scripture and layout of the article, was an inspiration. It is so good to hear about people who are living out the values of Jesus’ heart, especially when it comes to the difficult and sometimes overwhelming task of loving the poor as ourselves. Reynolds’ testimony gives me a lot of hope. …

Charissa Okamoto
Los Angeles, Calif.

The Status of Immigrants

In the last issue of Response, there was an interesting article about the loss of societal status that immigrants undergo, especially women, when they come to this country [“Article Reveals ‘Invisible’ Immigrants: Women Who Lose Status in the U.S.,” Summer 2002]. That loss, however, affects men and women equally. For some reason, a large number of people find it impossible to accept that the immigrant may come from a family that has had the benefit of a sophisticated education for centuries. When I was at SPU, I was asked once how long it had taken me to get used to wearing shoes. … There is another component as well. If the immigrant is not wealthy, and most of us are not, the immigrant is taken as less capable. In general, the condescending tone and attitudes hurt, although I think one learns to ignore it. The ones who pay a higher price are our children, who often are passed by to participate fully in the social life of the community. … I do not know whether there is a proper way to deal with the loss of status or not. Apparently, it can be seen as a rite of passage we all have to go through in order to be part of the North American mainstream on a later day, although this reflection does not make the loss of status less painful or less real.

John M. Mendoza ’85
Andover, Mass.

Nick Glancy on Tolkien and September 11

I appreciated the reflections of Nick Glancy on The Lord of the Rings, September 11, and times of transition [“Reflection: 9/11, John 13–17 and Middle-Earth,” Summer 2002]. I had the opposite experience — of moving to a new place and separating from friends and family and soon after being bombarded with the terror and tragedy of the 11th. I also found comfort and parallels in Tolkien’s works. The part that touched me most is when Frodo laments his duty of carrying the ring, wishing that he lived in another era. Gandalf replies that it is not for us to choose what time we live in, but how we respond to the time given us. In a state of turmoil and insecurity, a time when events occurring at my back door caused me to question who I was, these lines gave me a focus and a hope that each experience, no matter how difficult, contributes to making a stronger, better human and society. As people all over the world gather together to remember one year ago, I pray that they will remember the people of New York City, their resilience and their continued struggle to grapple with what (and who) were lost.

Jaclin Springer ’01
New York, N.Y.

I like it! What an awesome (OK — I know that’s an overworked word, but it does say what I want to say) format for Response. Thanks. And, as a recent widower, I was moved to tears by Nick Glancy’s simple but so profound oneliner: “At our victory celebration there will be no final fracturing of community.” Thank you, Nick. Keep it up, y’all.

Merwin “Mike” Van Doornik
Holland, Mich.

What Do You Think? Don’t be shy!

We’d like to hear your opinion about Response or any articles printed in the publication. To tell us what you think, send e-mail to, or visit You may also write Editor, Response, Seattle Pacific University, 3307 Third Avenue West, Seattle, Washington 98119–1997. Letters must be signed and will be printed as space permits.