Augustana’s Announcement Impacts the Seminary

Augustana’s Announcement Impacts the Seminary

September 14, 2007

On September 13 Augustana's president, Rob Oliver, announced the largest gift in the history of the college.  Anonymous donors gave a lead gift of $6,000,000 for renovation of the Mikkelsen library.  What a great day for our friends!

This gift impacts Sioux Falls Seminary directly because this ensures that our collection can be housed in their library when we relocate in the summer of 2009.  Augustana committed themselves to housing our collection on faith since they did not have the money to make the changes.  This announcement allows them to launch full out on finishing the plans and starting the changes.

The changes to the Mikkelsen library will be comprehensive, impacting every floor.  It will lead them into the future as the heart of the learning enterprise at a highly esteemed educational institution.  Our first class collection will add some 70,000 volumes and will be the best theological collection from St. Paul to Denver. We won't have to build a library in our move, saving considerable cost that can be put into our new facility.

Although some have wondered about the friendship and business relationship with a Lutheran school on the part of a Baptist school (and some have mistakenly thought that we were merging), we can't help but see the hand of God for both institutions.

When they asked if we would want to share chapel space, we learned that they had chapel on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  We have chapel on Tuesday and Thursday.  Coincidence or the hand of God?

Their walkout lower level was undergoing preparation for renovation after the Center for Western Studies moved into their own facility.  It would house our collection and they offered.  But how would they be able to fund the necessary renovations?  Again, the hand of God surfaces.

The anonymous donors chose anonymity because God had been good to them in their lifetime, blessing them with much.  They do not want to stop others from giving with their names attached, but they wanted to make a statement in their life situation.  Their request adds that a plaque be placed in the entry to the renovated space saying in Latin, "Soli Deo Gloria," "only to God be the glory."

We join them in praising our creator to whom belongs all the glory.