…the permeating antiquity…

I sometimes forget how old this place is.
Founded before Wisconsin was even a state… well over 150 years ago. And here I am, walking across these grounds that saints have trod. I am reminded most of this permeating antiquity when I go to the Red Chapel or the Blue House and when I work at the library.


The library has on its walls a plethora of pictures from way-back-when to spark the imagination. I love the pictures of a horse and wagon in front of the cloister or James Lloyd Breck sitting with members of the original Wisconsin natives.

But more than these pictures that adorn the walls I (being staff here) am constantly stumbling upon relics of years past – Bishop Edward Randolph Wells’ crozier [or Bishop’s staff] he was consecrated bishop of Wisconsin in 1874.  A small seemingly insignificant walking-stick leans next to it which was used by Archbishop Ramsey when he walked in the woods around the House. As well as an old saddle bag in the upstairs storage closet  and countless old pictures of past students filed away.

And as if to add to the inherent old-ness here we have these incredible copies of illuminated manuscripts in the archive room the oldest of which dates back to the 1400s. And I recently found this picture/painting/print of Thomas Aquinas in a back corner so I put it out by the stairs for all to see. (can’t hurt to have good ‘ol Thomas watching over the seminarians.  – and I suppose I’m biased as he is my one of my favorite theologians).

(Below is a picture of the 1513 Sarum Missal also in the archives):

And then there are some things that are just timeless. Like the sunset over Upper Nashotah Lake just walking distance from my afternoon job. I wonder if God granted those like James Lloyd Breck sights like this to strengthen their soul in their mission.

Untill nextime –
yours truly,


About Alethea

Hello, I'm the wife of a current Nashotah House MDiv student named Matthew Kemp. We just got married in May of 2010 and we are adventuring together through a new marriage, a new state, and a new way of living in the Nashotah House on-campus community. There are many wonderful things we are learning and experiencing and with that are some difficulties – but the more I live here the more I realize; what better place to sort all that out!? I currently work as a Preschool teacher in a school in the town of Nashotah in the mornings and as a librarian at the Nashotah House seminary library in the afternoons. I am an ex-city girl continually falling in love with the country. I often live vicariously through my husband as he shares class discussions and books he is reading being that I graduated with a Bachelors in Theology and have a love of Philosophy to boot. All in all I am a little crazy and a lot of happy to be here adventuring. Thank you for listening to my stories. -Alethea