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Sitting in my office I have a box. In it are the written prayers from student leaders that were part of the 100 days of prayer for me and the provost after we assumed our new roles this fall. The box is a replica of J.N. Andrews’ trunk that he used when he first left for mission service. The proportions are exactly 50 percent.

What is particularly unique is that the materials are almost all taken from Lamson Hall bedframes. The individual who made the box so carefully is one of our valued staff, Harold Schmidt. This story is his story. It is also the story of what makes this campus rich in its diversity and history. And it is also the story of the deep connections amongst us.

Harold comes from Argentina. But his heritage is from Europe. On one side of his family is immigrant George Riffel, first Adventist lay evangelist to Argentina, who had no idea that only an ordained pastor could baptize the 50 converts he made. On the other side is the Schmidt family who ended up in Argentina when his grandfather, 8 years old, was sick and couldn’t get on the ship to Canada. And then there is the influence of J.N. Andrews, who was a missionary to Argentina from a distance.

All three threads amazingly connect together on the campus of the Adventist university in Argentina, which became the first center of Adventist work in that country. And yes, somehow this all connects back to Harold and this box in my office.

Read Harold’s story and others like it at

Thank you, Harold, for living the spirit of Andrews.


Andrea Luxton

Publication Date



Higher Education

Harold Schmidt