John M. Gurgel, editor
Allow me a few words of introduction to frame these rare written words of my father, Rev. Roland A. Gurgel. He was a major force in the army of his God, once involved in many campaigns and engaged on numerous fronts. He was preacher, teacher, professor, and president, and now retired father of nine.
As a preacher his legacy is his zeal and his everlasting compassion. He had an uncanny ability to see into eternity and to share that vision with those around him. Unlike the preachers who climbed steeples in order to be closer to God, he was busy down among God's people. He was father to many. And father of mine.
He cast a large, long shadow that gave respite to great multitudes. But perhaps the greatest testimony to Grandpa, and Grandmother, Gurgel's character is that all nine of their children, at one time in their professional lives, were either preachers or teachers. He passed on a calling as well as a name.
This is his story, in his words, with a few added comments from his children, and wife, written via email installments in 2001.
Prologue 2nd Edition, 2013
Paul R. Gurgel, editor
After retiring from teaching at Immanuel Lutheran High School, College and Seminary in 1986, Dad moved to Mankato, MN. Here he and Mom lived until her death on March 2, 1999. During this time Dad served as vacancy pastor to a number of congregations, while Mom dedicated her time to painting over fifty pictures. After Mom's death, he continued to live alone, lovingly attended by daughters Kathy and Bethany. In his apartment on 5th St., he spent many hours baking thousands of cookies for the 'kids.' In 2011, recognizing he could no longer continue to live alone, he moved back to Eau Claire to live with daughter Deborah. A number of falls and a sequence of monthly visits to the emergency room resulted in yet another move. On February 13, 2012 he moved into assisted living at the Rutledge Home in Chippewa Falls, WI.
Now at the ripe of age of 92, he continues to reside in Room #114. Visits are always welcome and received with pleasure.
NOTE: Dad was 80+ years old and had just learned to use the computer when he began writing these notes and emailing them out over a two year period. MUCH work still needs to be done in the editing dept. Also, a disk of the 750 pictures that Deb scanned from Mom's photo album (including a number of her paintings) is available. Paul