When I think of my year at Emory, probably the most defining experience was the colorful variety of Christian liturgies found in America. Often times I think of Christmas and Easter, when I attended as many different services in all kinds of churches—Anglican, Baptist, AME, Greek Orthodox and many more...—as never again. Religious life at Cannon Chapel remains a lasting memory for me: to see faculty members celebrate faith each in their denominational tradition deeply shaped my understanding of living as a Christian in this whole world of various impressive ways to praise God.

My wife and I just returned from Israel, where we deliberately sought the abundance of different liturgies. I am sure that specifically the opportunity to attend the Candler-Göttingen exchange opened my “spiritual senses” for the bounty of worship.

This refers to my being a German, living in a relatively monolithic church, in a society with a more or less binary Christian option (Protestant or Catholic), but maybe even more to living in Eastern Germany, one of the most secularized regions in the world. In our daily life here, so many people living next door show us they find our message irrelevant, so it really feels “anointing” to belong to the worldwide church of Jesus Christ in all of its shapes.  

With a grateful look back to the academic year 2005-06 I send warm greetings across the ocean. My time in Atlanta continues to accompany my life!