A Well-Tuned Life

We were thrilled to have Dr. Andrew Crow lead us through a 2-part series on Western music and human flourishing.

In this fascinating and thought-provoking two-part series, Dr. Crow demonstrated the ways in which Western music has evolved according to both nature (e.g., mathematical ratios) and nurture (familiarity with certain traditions). He then presented a kind of alternative model for the history of the Western canon and prodded us to consider the pros and cons of musical notation vs. interpretation.

As a sort of interlude, he presented an extended analogy of the piano as the body of Christ—a metaphor that he developed (or perhaps discovered) during his many years as a piano tuner.

We hope to have the final edit of the video up soon.

A Life Well-Lived

In the wake of Tim’s passing to Glory, there have been countless tributes and articles written. May I suggest this one by David Brooks, remarkable for the humility shown by its author, a long-time New York Times columnist sought after for his own opinions:

Tim Keller Taught Me About Joy

And in light of our discussions on music this week, I will also recommend Tim Keller’s sermon called Singing.



Alcuin Study Center was incorporated in August of 2020. Since that time our programming has reached several hundred people, including Ball State faculty, both undergraduate and graduate students, and community members from a wide range of denominations and backgrounds.

Nearly every participant has explicitly stated what a unique place Alcuin is. In particular, they comment on the need to have a space that is neither University nor Church, a space where honest conversations, questions, and doubts may be expressed. Those of us in the Church may protest, “But isn’t the church

Passing the Torch

Todd Wenninger has served as Operations Manager for Alcuin Study Center for the past 2 years, but that job title does not do justice to the role that Todd has filled in the development of this institution or in my personal life.

Unfortunately, Todd is in need of a full-time position and we are not yet able to provide that for him. Our financial situation is looking good, but not quite good enough to keep Todd on board. Todd has found employment with the Indiana Natural Resources Foundation and we are thrilled to see the ways that the Lord is providing for him and his family.

Though his role is changing, we’ll still be seeing Todd around. He has agreed to join the first cohort of Alcuin Ambassadors. Look for more details about our new Alcuin Ambassadors program in the June Notes from Alcuin.

Adam Garner has lived in the apartment above Alcuin Study Center since its inception. He is a BSU graduate and a burgeoning film maker. He has become increasingly involved in Alcuin events over the years, and the Alcuin staff and board have worked closely with Adam to help him grow in his faith, in his film career, and in his understanding of the ways that those two things work together.

As Providence would have it, Adam, who, like Todd, is gifted in both hospitality and administration, was looking for a part-time job even as Todd was needing a full-time one. It was a no-brainer. Adam is now filling some of the gaps that Todd is leaving, and bringing his film-making and communication skills to bear as well. Please welcome ASC’s new Director of Media and Hospitality, Adam Garner!

CCSC Annual Meeting

Adam and I will be attending the Consortium of Christian Study Centers‘ Annual Meeting next month in Minneapolis. Our friends at Anselm House will be hosting the gathering this year. These gatherings are rich and encouraging, and I am so excited that Adam will be able to see the larger work of which Alcuin Study Center is but one part.

“Music is a witness to the reality

that life is not random,

that this is not an accident.”

– Tim Keller

The above photo is of John Coltrane, who’s album A Love Supreme caused music critic Ashley Kahn to say “As I listened to the album again and again, I felt impelled to address Coltrane’s spirituality. Though I consider myself a dedicated agnostic and a die-hard rationalist, I am ready to admit that there is much that can seem the handiwork of some eternal force under spiritual direction.”

be kind