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Lowell Brueckner

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Dad’s Slides


(Click to enlarge photos)
Last summer I bought a converter on-line that converts slides into digital photos. The main reason that I wanted it was to preserve my dad’s collection of slides taken of his work among the Native Americans. Some of them have already been destroyed by dampness over the years.

Somewhere close to 1950, a blind youth by the name of Norman gave Dad the 35 mm. camera and projector specifically for this work. Norman was one of the unsung heroes of the faith that you will meet in heaven. He was 18-years-old at the time and already an ‘A’ student in the University of Wisconsin. I remember when he stayed at our home for a time and the picture that is fixed in my mind is of Norman
Mrs. Christen and her daughter
reading his Braille Bible in our living room. I need to search for the slide that my Dad took of Norman, sitting on the foundation of a church that Dad was building in Oneida, Wisconsin, while ministering to the Oneida Natives. Hopefully, it is still in good condition. Norman is the reason that these slides are available.

I do have on hand a slide of another unsung hero… Mrs. Christen. In the 1930’s, my parents, who had never been exposed to the gospel, moved next door to Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Christen. They observed the uniqueness of this couple, something in their very persons, beyond what they said and did. Through them my parents came to the Lord in 1935. Some of you may know the story from reading my book, What Our Hands Have Handled. No slides would have ever been taken by my dad, who became a missionary to the Native American, had it not been for the Christens. I am so happy that I can share them with you.

Similar markings in the center column
Here is Dad in a slide taken in 1955, when he became principal of the Mokahum Indian Bible School (Mokahum means sunrise in the Chippewa or Ojibwa tongue). I noticed that he was marking on his Bible Reading Record and since I have the collection of 85 of these records, I searched through them, comparing them with the slightly blurred copy on his desk. I found this one, in which, in June 1954, he began his 14th journey through the Word of God. It’s the same one. My brother, Clarence, has the final one, number 86… 86 times through the Bible, from the time when he began to keep the records in 1945 until the day he died.

Here are a few examples of photos taken of those whom Dad called,
“My beloved Indian people.” He loved them and they loved him. He won many to the Lord, who became 
stalwarts in the faith. A good number went into full-time gospel service. These were not “pray the sinner’s prayer today, drunk on the street tomorrow” converts, but people that you will see in heaven…

... such as Clyde Este 
I tell Clyde’s story in the book I mentioned above, chapter 8, beginning on page 72. The majority of the chapters recount Dad’s life and ministry. Clyde couldn’t sleep the night after he heard my dad preach, so at 4:30 a.m., he went to the house, where he was sleeping and found the Lord. Not only Clyde, but his whole family came to the Lord and entered the ministry. I heard recently from our daughter and son-in-law, who are ministering at the newly restored Mokahum Bible School, that a couple of years ago, one of Clyde’s daughters, in her 60’s, graduated from the school.

Here is Andy Bush, a native lay worker and evangelist, who came to my dad, working in an unheated garage. They knelt together in -40 degree weather and Andy’s heart was warmed. He holds in his hand the New Testament my dad gave him on that occasion. Read the story on page 74 of the same chapter.

Well, I have barely scratched the surface of a story that goes on and on. I will probably show more converted slides on this blog from time to time. In fact, the story hasn’t ended and children of converts from the 1930’s – 1980’s are following in the path of parents, who found spiritual reality through the ministry of a simple man, who only finished six years of public schooling. As was the case with the great apostle, this man’s calling was from God and not from man.


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