“Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints” (Psalm 116:15).
My friend and colleague Bob Webber died on Friday, April 27, 2007 after an 8 month battle with pancreatic cancer. He fought a valiant fight and died with great dignity. A public memorial service in the Chicago area is being planned and details about the service will be posted on Northern Seminary’s website: www.seminary.edu.
Bob Webber was a special person. He was a committed Christian who was dedicated to the renewal of the church and to Christian ministry. Bob Webber was one of the foremost authorities on worship renewal. He conducted workshops and seminars on worship and spirituality for almost every major denomination in North America through the Institute in Worship Studies located in Florida, which he founded in 1995.
In the Fall of 2006, Bob brought together a group of scholars, pastors, and church leaders to prepare a “Call to an Ancient Evangelical Future.” The result of this work was a document that challenged the next generation of evangelical leaders “to make God’s story known through the rediscovery of the church’s mission in its worship, spirituality, and life in the world.”
Bob was a prolific writer. Every year when Northern Seminary awarded the annual Faculty Award for Publication, Bob would always have two (sometimes more than two) books that qualified for the award. His vast knowledge of theology and church history was evident in his lectures and presentations. He was a great teacher.
Bob was a good friend and a great colleague. His sense of humor and his friendly attitude was manifest throughout his years of service here at Northern. To know Bob was to appreciate his friendliness, his openness, and his enthusiasm for the church. Those of us who knew Bob and worked with him will greatly miss his joy for the spiritual and his zest for life.
“Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.” “Blessed indeed,” says the Spirit, “because they will rest from their work since their good deeds will follow them” (Revelation 14:13).
Claude F. Mariottini
Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary