As an infant Benjamin Judd Ulring Splichal Larson was wrapped in the arms of God in the waters of baptism, and from those waters his life was an outpouring of love and joy, laughter and play, music and song, in response to God first loving Ben.
Ben’s love of Jesus Christ, walking in accompaniment, passionately loving others, listening and learning from those who are poor across the globe, drove his serving.
We give thanks to God for the incredible joy of knowing Ben. His laughter, playfulness and passionate heart for those who are hurting were manifest in his daily life. He delighted in the privilege of serving and knowing Jesus Christ, laying out his life in joy.
Most of the people who died in this deadly Haiti earthquake were the poorest of the poor in this hemisphere. Ben went to Haiti to teach theology and Scripture in the new Lutheran Church of Haiti (Eglise Lutherienne d’Haiti), but more deeply to learn from these people loved by God. In his young death his life joins the bodies of the poor. In the Haitian rubble Ben’s life joins these dear beloved people of God: all those parents crying for their children, young widows calling out for their husbands, new orphans searching for their parents.
"We do not live to ourselves, and we do not die to ourselves. If we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord; so then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord's. For to this end Christ died and lived again, so that he might be Lord of both the dead and the living."