Studium Excitare is the official journal of the confessional language program at Martin Luther College (MLC). In the past several months, we have become familiar with the history of Studium through conversations with previous editors and faculty advisors, and, recently, through our own experiences. Here is offered a summary of Studium’s history, along with a few thoughts on the journal and its future.
Studium Excitare has its origin in the early aughts of the 21st century. Five pre-seminary students, inspired to find answers to doctrinal questions raised in the dorm, began publishing articles concerning biblical doctrine, as well as Latin and German translations from the writings of various church fathers. Soon, the students ceased writing doctrinal articles and focused the journal entirely on translation. The reasoning behind this decision is explained in Issue 3 - “Transition to Translation.” When the original students behind Studium graduated, the journal was not published for roughly two years.
Studium regained some momentum in 2007, after one of Studium’s faculty advisors, Professor Wessel, approached two freshmen about reviving the journal. By this time, Studium Excitare had become an official MLC publication. The two freshmen, Andrew Hussman and Aaron Jensen, worked as editors of Studium until their graduation in 2011. During their time at MLC, Studium added eight issues to the original group’s ten. Once they graduated, the journal was not published again for about seven years.
In the summer of 2018, we contacted Professor Danell (another faculty advisor) about restarting Studium Excitare. He advised us to contact Andrew Hussman and Aaron Jensen, now pastors, for further advice and resources. They have been more than helpful with the reboot, and we hope to improve the operation of the journal with the guidance they have provided.
Next, we contacted about 20 MLC students to gauge their interest in Studium’s restart. Entering the school year with a core group of fifteen interested students, we set up a weekly meeting time, gained club status from student government, and worked towards publishing Studium’s next issue. To maintain organization and progress, we set up a leadership structure, worked off of an agenda, and discussed Studium’s development regularly. We did not perform all of this without some complications. Perhaps the most significant obstacle was deciding how to publish the journal. For now, past issues are kept on studiumexcitare.com, and new issues are posted on our Google site. Overall, though, we are pleased with the progress Studium has made in the past months.
No one can say where Studium Excitare will go from here. The journal may be in publication for the next 100 years, or this issue may be its last. Studium’s future will depend mostly on the amount of effort put forth by our college’s confessional language students. MLC students are no strangers to effort. This school year, our pool of approximately 750 undergraduates not only put together a conference-winning football team but also will perform five student-led drama productions. The same MLC students attending Intermediate Hebrew or Number Theory classes in the morning will teach trumpet or piano lessons in the afternoon. Our classmates may work two or three part-time jobs and also host high schoolers for college visits and play the organ for morning chapel. And now, at least for this issue, MLC students publish an academic journal devoted to translating theological works from Latin and German. Thanks be to God that our efforts have been blessed! How futile would these efforts be if we had no love for God, who loved us first?
Please enjoy Issue 19.
Soli Deo Gloria.
— Philip Balge