Walter Wangerin Jr. died last Thursday (August 5, 2021). I met Walter in the flesh twice, but I knew him long before in his preaching and his writing.
I had a copy of his “The Book of God,“ an elephantine tome that retells the story of the Bible in novel form. Unfortunately, the book was lost in our church fire. I’ve missed it for over ten years now.
I have a copy of his very personal “Letters from the Land of Cancer” that I have shared with many friends who have spent time in that same land. I’ve shared it because I lack words and experience and trusted Walter to speak into their lives better than I could.
I have a very old audio recording of one of his sermons. It’s a recording of a recording made by putting a tape recorder close to a television speaker, and it sounds as good as you might imagine. I’ve done my best to clean it up. It’s Walter’s remembrance of his grandfather’s death and what his grandfather taught him.
Both times we met, he was kind to me, laughed at my foolishness (I asked, “Remember that one time when you wrote the Bible?”). And he blessed me out of his suffering.Continue reading