Lavina's funeral service is also available.
|Steven A Anderson
|Marina Capella (read text)
|Paul Larsen (read text)
|Vickie Stewart Eastman
|Cheryll May (read text)
|Christian Anderson (read text)
|Bishop Mahonri Madrigal (read text)
Words by Paul; Lynn Carson, organ; Pam Carson, chorister
Father in Heaven, we are met here to celebrate the life of Paul Anderson. We thank Thee for him. We thank Thee for the gospel, and for the gospel light, for the atonement of Thy Son, for the reality of the resurreciton. We pray that Thou will bless us that we might have fond memories recalled. We ask thee to bless those who are taking part in any way in this particular service that they might be blessed with an abudance of thy spirit. And bless us that we might go away desiring to make our own good memories. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Thank you very much for that wonderful prayer. Truly we are gathered here, as was expressed, to celebrate the life of Brother Anderson. We appreciate Sister Pam Carson leading us in the music today, and Bro Lynn Carson who will be our organist. The program will be as follows. The obituary will be shared by Marina Capella, daughter-in-law to Brother Anderson. We will then hear from Paul Larsen, neighbor and friend of Brother Anderson. Following, we will have some readings from Vickie Stewart Eastman and J. Frederic Voros, close friends and fellow hymn-writers. (Brother Anderson was a member of a hymn writing group). Following their remarks, we will hear a musical number, "I Am the Resurrection", composed by Alan Austin, which will then be followed Cheryll Lynn May, a friend and colleague at BYU of Brother Anderson's. That will be followed by Christian N. K. Anderson, son of Brother Anderson. We'll go to that point.
Paul Lawrence Anderson was born June 6, 1946, to Alvin M. Anderson and Ruby Jennie Johnson Anderson. His parents grew up in this very neighborhood, just blocks from where he spent most of his adult life. World War II job opportunities drove his parents to southern California, and Paul was born in Pasadena. Paul and his two older brothers drove a red convertible, spent weekly time on the beach, and hiked in the Sierra Nevadas with their Scout troop where Paul earned his Eagle badge. His family lived just blocks from the Rose Parade route, and his family owned a bench they would carry out once a year to watch the parade.
Paul attended Stanford University from 1954-1968, graduating with honors in architecture. His bishop in the Stanford student ward was now-apostle Henry B. Eyring, whom he admired. He had fond memories of the semester he spent abroad in France, and his French-speaking skills proved useful when he met Lavina who had served a mission in France, and during multiple subsequent trips to France. The conversation at the dinner table with Paul, Christian, and Lavina would frequently and rapidly devolve into French repartee.
After college, Paul served a mission in southern Japan from 1968-1970. As a tall Scandinavian, he qualified for the title of "gai-jin" (which means foreigner in Japanese). He derived great delight from surprising people with his Japanese fluency, both while proselyting and after his mission. On a return trip to Japan a few years ago, some teenagers were so delighted to meet a Japanese-speakng "gai-jin" that they stopped to take a selfie with him, a gesture that he found gleefully amusing. His mission president was Edward Y. Okazaki; through him Paul developed a close relationship with the Okazaki family. He was a great fan of Chieko Okazaki's sermons and writing.
Following his mission, he attended Princeton University and earned his master's of architecture in 1972. His thesis project was designing an LDS meetinghouse based on historical and theological themes.
Paul was licensed as an architect in California in 1976. He practiced architecture at Pasadena Design Associates for three years before moving to Utah. Though his career took an unexpected turn working with the Church History Department, he maintained his architectural licence his entire life. He worked with private clients to design and remodel homes. He beamed with unassuming pride when he shared that Clark Ivory of Ivory Homes called him his "secret weapon" and invited him to work on challenging design projects. He hoped, with our eager encouragement, to someday help Christian and me design our own home.
After graduate school, Paul relocated to Utah for a summer fellowship on Mormon architecture in the History Division of Church Historian Leonard J. Arrington. It was there that he met Lavina Fielding, who was an associate editor of the Ensign. They dated for two years and Paul eventually proposed, then allegedly left town for two weeks to Lavina's chagrin. Despite some initial hesitation on Lavina's part, and last-minute qualms on Paul's part, they were married June 13, 1977, by then-apostle Howard W. Hunter. Three months later, they moved to Roberta Street where they have lived ever since and where their son (and my husband), Christian, grew up. Paul's strong feminist leanings, patience, brilliance, humor, and quick wit made him a wonderful companion to Lavina for 40 years. He shared in Lavina's indignation and grief following her excommunication in 1993, and made sure to sit at the aisle side of the pew during sacrament meeting to avoid accidental attempts to pass her the sacramental bread and water. Despite being more angry about this than almost anything else in life, he spoke openly and publicly about his hopes for reconciliation.
In 1976 Florence Jacobsen, former general Young Women's president and newly appointed Church Curator of Historic Arts, hired Paul to be her right-hand man. His primary assignment was collaborating with the Church Architect on plans for the new Museum of Church History and Art. He also played a key role in the interior restoration of the Manti Temple, the restoration of the Brigham City Tabernacle, Newel K. Whitney Store in Kirtland, Sarah M. Kimball Home in Nauvoo, Carthage Jail Visitors' Center, Peter Whitmer Home in Fayette, Brigham Young Winter Home, and Jacob Hamblin Home in St. George. Paul greatly admired Florence and loved recounting stories of his days spent working with her. She probably did not hesitate at all to re-enlist his help on celestial design projects in heaven.
Paul spent seven years (from 1984-91) as senior exhibits designer at the Museum of Church History and Art. He then moved to Brigham Young University where he helped plan the Museum of Art and designed exhibits until his retirement in 2014. One of his greatest joys was working with other creative people there. He also taught undergraduate courses and honors seminars at BYU. His colleague and friend, Cheryll Lynn May, will expound shortly on this chapter of his life.
He was a member of the Mormon History Association for forty years and also served as its president from 2007-2008. He wrote and presented many papers on historic topics. As his colleague and friend Kirk Henrichsen wrote, "Year after year his sessions were filled by people anxious to see what he had to show about LDS art, architecture and our cultural history. For many MHA attendees the most anticipated part of the conference was the bus tour to historic sites with Paul's entertaining, on-the-road, commentary about what we were about to see." Still in manuscript (and hoping to be published) is his life's written masterpiece: Mormon Moderne: Latter-day Saint Architecture, 1925-1945.
Paul sang in the Utah Symphony Chorus for many years. He authored four hymns in the current (1985) LDS hymnbook, two of which we sing today. He frequently collaborated with gifted composer Lynn R. Carson, who is playing the organ today, on interesting and significant hymns. After Paul retired from BYU, he and Lynn participated in the Western Hymn Writers Workshop, chaired by J. Frederic Voros. He spent the evening before his death in the company of those friends refining and singing Alan Astin's setting for "I Am the Resurrection and the Life" by Alan Astin, which we will hear performed today.
His artistic talent and creativity manifest itself in many ways. For those of you fortunate to be on the Anderson Christmas card list, you are familiar with the hand-drawn sketches that adorned the cover of each Christmas card since 1976. His sketchbook accompanied him every place he traveled, and he joyfully shared the sketches with his travel companions, family, and friends – especially those who were interested and patient enough to sit through his enthusiastic hours-long slide shows of travel pictures. After retiring from BYU at the end of 2014, he launched into oil painting with a passion, taking one class per quarter at the Salt Lake Community College down the street. It helped that tuition is $10 per class for senior citizens. He enjoyed the technical challenge of learning new painting skills. His goal the last two years was to finish one painting per week. The only problem was, he said, that at the end of each year he would have 52 paintings and no wall space. He nearly accomplished this goal: in just over two years he produced 114 paintings.
He loved this Whittier Ward building that we gather in here today. More importantly, he loved the members of the ward whom he worshipped and served with over the past 40 years. At one time, he was a counselor in the bishopric with his friend and neighbor Paul Larsen, and the two Pauls later worked together to help the Scouting program thrive. (Paul Larsen can tell you more about their ward escapades in a few moments.) He served in the stake high council for a time, but resigned to become a Primary teacher and chorister. He always considered Primary chorister one of his favorite callings, but consoled himself by leading the ward choir from about 1991 until his death. He co-taught Sunday School on-and-off for a total of twenty-four years, combining his academic knowledge of history and scripture with a disciple's perspective to facilitate thought-provoking discussions. He often joked, "You can't plan a good lesson if you wait until the night before. That's why you always start after midnight." There are Sunday School lesson plans dating back many years tucked away in boxes throughout the house.
Paul was bright, creative, genial, faithful, a marvelous storyteller, a wonderful friend, a loving husband, and a devoted father. He is already sorely missed.
He is survived by his wife, Lavina Fielding Anderson, son Christian N. K. Anderson, and daughter-in-law Marina Capella; two older brothers: M. Lynn Anderson (Betty Madron); and Steven Alvin Anderson (Betty Buie).
It's amazing for me to be standing here at this pulpit again, as I did a number of times a number of years ago. Glad to be here, not under these circumstances, but it's nice to be back in Whittier Ward.
Christian told me to give a 5-10 minute talk. The only time I timed it, it was three hours; however, two minutes into the talk I fell asleep--most of that time I was unconcious, so it's a little undetermined. I've had a terrible cold, really bad eye infection. My wife told me I cannot wear my sunglasses, but my eyes hurt.
I figure it was 36-37 years ago we bought a house here on Roberta St--I don't like talking at funerals--anyway, my wife was hesitant to move in. She was pregnant, we had a toddler, and this looked like a sketchy neighborhood. So I brought her down to the house, with the intention of showing it to her, getting on my knees, and begging her to consider it. But what won her over was the neighbor who walked over to introduce himself. This kind of shiny--both on his head but on his face as well--man walked up and shook hands and said, "I'm Paul Anderson, I live next door." My father-in-law is an architect and those two started talking (my wife was in architecture school at the time) so immediately there was this bond. He left, and she said, "OK." Right, Lavina?
When we moved in here, I was not an active member of the Church. In fact, I was very much NOT a member of the Church. I was agnostic. I wasn't bitter about the Church but I had no interest. Then I had something of an existential crisis in those early years here that led me to start to look again, pray again, ponder, and the message I got was to get engaged again in the Church. Which horrified me. It was the last thing in the world I wanted to do. But there were a few people who we had met that made that seem possible: one was Lavina, another was Paul Anderson. That people like that could be in the church said to me, "Okay, maybe there's a place for me." The other two are sitting over there (with their heads down), Joe and Lee Bennion.
So we got back involved with the Church. It was a crazy time. I don't know if Sua Pe'a came today. Are you here? Son-of-a-gun, on the back row. That's the other person. He was bishop of this ward, and we came and he met us and he called me to be Gospel Doctrine teacher my first time back in church in many years. I liked him, I trusted him for good reason, and six months later he asked me to be in the bishopric with him. In those intervening years we came to know the Andersons very well, we sat at that little table in the nook many times as well as them coming over to our house. We were close. Paul and Ann were actually closer in spirit, and Lavina and I were, well, we were renegades and those two were peacemakers. They always appreciated that about each other. I could tell there was a closeness there.
I brought a visual aid that will be of absolutely no use to most of you. Can anybody see this, maybe the first row? This is our baptismal party in Southern Utah at Calf Creek falls. My son Erik (who is at the end of the row over there), Christian and the Andersons, and the Bennions, and my parents-in-law, we all drove down there, camped out the night before, and baptized our two sons. It was appropriate we did that, because Christian and Erik in those years were raised as brothers, they were together so often. I'm not going to read scriptures to you, I'm just going to show you this picture of me baptizing Erik in Calf Creek Falls which I have in my triple. I want you to know it is a beautiful waterfall: it comes down a long distance into a pool, beautiful red-and-white rocks stained over millenia by the elements. We chose May because we thought the water would have warmed up by then. Actually, it was still snowmelt coming down from a mountain only a few miles away, and we realized our mistake very quickly. You remember that Christian? (CHRISTIAN: Oh, yes.) We stepped in and I thought, "Oh my gosh." Erik went with me and I'm sure it was worse [for you] because you saw our faces. We stepped in and I hold the record for the fastest baptismal prayer ever given; Paul was just a slight bit slower. But I gave a very, very fast prayer; and Erik came out of the water, and we walked over to the shore and he looked at me and said, "Thanks for saying it so fast, Dad." It was cold! So then Paul and Christian went into the water, got out, dried off, we went into a little grove of trees not too far away, and we confirmed them and gave them the gift of the Holy Ghost. I personally wanted it to be in a place like that. I wanted them to have that spiritual center. I think Paul felt the same way (Paul and Lavina) because they went to so much trouble to get down there (it took all day).
Those were some of the bonds that held our families together. A few years later, the boys were old enough to be Boy Scouts. I was the Scoutmaster, and I went to Paul and said, "I need somebody to help me on this. Somebody to share this load." And Paul was very willing to do that; I doubt Roger Christiansen is here, but he also came to help. The three of us took those boys--and this is a fairly poor ward, some of the families were okay and others were not, and we decided right off the bat mostly for that reason that we would never go to an organized Boy Scout camp. We would do our own thing. And so, those poor boys, in a way, hiked all over these mountain ranges in Utah. One of the first things they did was a 50-mile hike across the Wasatch Plateau, and it was challenging. The boys were going along, and they were hot and sweaty and mucky. We may have violated something in a rulebook, but we came to a stream and I looked at Paul and just said, "Clothes off." Paul and I took our clothes off and skinny-dipped in the pond, and the boys were all sitting there looking at us, thinking, "These are our leaders." Then they slowly took their clothes off and got in the water, and it was HARD to get them out. So all the way across the Wasatch Plateau, whenever we were sweaty and found a stream or a little lake we went skinny-dipping. We had a great, great time.
We did other things. We organized a river trip of our own, several days on the Colorado River, and that was wonderful. I'll never forget one of the boys who had a tough family situation--Paul was rowing my boat, we switched back-and-forth, Paul was rowing at the time--I got off in the water with him, and this boy and I were just floating in the water, and he looked over at me and said, "This is the greatest moment of my life." I thought, "That's wonderful. That's wonderful that someone can point to this moment."
We did winter camps in the Wasatch Mountains. You think it's cold down here in winter at night? Try being in the mountains. Our favorite camp was Diamond Fork. We'd camp there, then hike in the morning and there were hot springs several miles up the canyon. It was kind of the reward for all the suffering we put them through. We would occasionally drive out to the Utah-Nevada Border, drive south an hour from Wendover, then west out into the desert heading to the Goshute Mountains (right, Erik?). We'd camp at the base of the mountains then hike up them the next day to a hawk-watch station where they tracked birds-of-prey as they migrated from the north. It was wonderful. They'd band them, check their health, let the boys participate in all that. They put a hood on their heads (the birds' heads, not the boys') and give each boy a bird, one after another. The boy would stand there, take the hood off and pfft--the bird would fly off. An incredible thrill.
There were so many other days, camping here in the Wasatch, hiking in the Wasatch, and things like that. One day we were doing a special award of some sort. Paul was in charge, it was a history award of some sort. We had to hike the Mormon Trail or something, so we decided to camp up Emigration Trail, then hike down to This Is the Place Monument. Paul led it and I with another leader took the car down below and waited, and waited, and waited. Finally, I said, "Wow, this is going much slower than I thought. It wasn't that far we decided to hike." So I took the car and drove all the way up the canyon, and all the way down. They were supposed to be hiking along the side of the road, so I did it again: all the way up, and all the way down. And then I got out of the car and said, "This is impossible! How can an entire troop go missing? They're obliterated off the face of the earth!" I was frantic. The worst thing a Scoutmaster can do is lose a boy, but to lose all of them? It would have gone down in history. I waited against for a while, and eventually they reemerged right where we'd planned. Paul said, "I found a trail. And I thought it might take us there and it looked so much nicer than the side of the road. So I took that trail. And it did go there for a while, but then it veered off. (Ha!) Eventually I realized it wouldn't get us there, so I came back."
That was Paul. Scouting was a great time. When we took over the troop there really wasn't a troop. People told us they didn't want their boys in the troop because it'd always been such a failure. They wanted them to go over to St. Anne's, which just seemed to really rub it in. We talked to a few of them and said, "We're going to give our best, do our best", and they said, "You haven't had an Eagle award in this ward in x number of years. You know, why should we trust you?" When we finished, I can't remember how many Eagle Scout awards we had, 10? 12? And a number of other boys who'd gone a long ways along that path when they finally left the scouting program. So it was a great honor to serve with Paul. He was always there, always taking over when I couldn't do it. It was truly shared leadership.
Christian wanted me to tell a few stories that maybe he hadn't heard. This one isn't so funny, but for that reason I tell it. After Lavina was excommunicated, Christian and Paul went with our family to Cedar City for the Shakespeare Festival. We rented a condo up in the mountains so we had a little more space. I hadn't spoken to Paul about how he felt--I knew how Lavina felt, but I hadn't spoken to Paul about it. So I went over one afternoon between plays and sat down in the hot tub and I asked him, "How do you feel about this?" And I saw something I'd never seen before in Paul. I saw anger. This look came over him; he was furious and he let it all come out there in that hot tub. I was seated across from him--I can't believe it but it's true--the anger was coming through the water. I don't know if anybody has ever had this experience, but it was coming through the water and I felt like a thousand little ninja warriors were stabbing me, like this, I was feeling a little bit of what he was feeling. I was feeling bad, partly for myself. I climbed out of the hot tub, that's how intense it was, and he finished talking. Hopefully in some way he got to purge that. I've worked for a number of years with people who are incarcerated, mostly young people--youth corrections--just as a volunteer, and I've found something: anger will get you into trouble if you hold it inside. If you keep that anger, even if you're always expressing it all the time, anger will get you into trouble, lead you down some very dark paths. It didn't happen to Paul. He expressed that anger. He was feeling that anger, but that light came back. Paul was always a person of light, and that light came back to him.
The main thing about Paul, you notice on this program, you notice he's smiling. Paul was always smiling. He had different levels of smiles. I'll tell you a couple of stories about that. One happened in this house over here. My youngest son over here is Isaac—Hi, Isaac--Isaac has Downs' Syndrome, sweetest guy on the planet. I'm going to tell you something about Lavina: she sends him a card every week, so that he gets mail. She's done this for years. He looks forward to it, Lavina. He brings it in, he wants everyone to gather round as it's read, that's so wonderful. Anyway, when he was...five?... I don't know what he was. We were having this meeting, and a number of men including Paul were in this circle in our little living room and suddenly out of the blue Isaac came jumping into the room with a nerf machine gun, stark naked, and began shooting all the leaders, like this. Most everybody was kinda like this [shocked expression], but when I close my eyes to recreate the scene what do I see? I see Paul laughing. And his laughter spread to everybody else and told them "This is okay. This is just Isaac." I was embarrassed. I couldn't laugh, but Paul could do that, and I have that image so stark in my mind: Paul Anderson laughing.
Another little story, one Erik told me. He and Paul and Christian were driving somewhere--they had some great adventures together--and Christian, you were in your rabidly anti-rock-and-roll mode, and the Rolling Stones came on the radio. Erik thought, "Oh, that bad boys of rock-and-roll". Paul smiled, sat back, and started singing to the song. He knew all the words to, I think it was "Brown Sugar". Do you want to sing that for us? And I love that about Paul. He was versatile, he was all-over-the-place, his interests were immense, you could just never extend beyond this man's interests. Such an active mind and good heart, it's amazing.
The last, [to Sua] I'm going to tell this with your permission. Was it a year ago you had your party? He was our bishop way back when, and he had a 50th wedding anniversary and we thought it was a come-and-say-hello-and-have-a-piece-of-cake deal. We had two boys with Downs Syndrome we had to get squared away before we left, and we showed up late, and it was a sit-down dinner. It started at six, and we walked in at seven o'clock and actually your daughter saw us and screamed and grabbed us and pulled us...you have to understand how this is situated...is it too much time? Okay. I will just say this, it was very embarassing, Sua. He pulled us up to the front and sat us down with two plates apart from everybody else, so hundreds of people were looking at us like "Who are these people?" I felt like the prodigal's son had returned. I was really embarassed, I couldn't even eat. But I loved being there with you two, it was worth everything being there with you. I looked over, and there was Paul Anderson at the side, fairly near us, and he had that cheshire grin. He's feeling mischievous. I understood it, he was absolutely loving our discomfort. And he told us so afterwards.
I had one little thing I wanted to read before we hit three hours. I'm really breezing over things. My son just flew in from Rochester because he could not NOT be here. Here's something from William James, who's one of my philosophic heroes in life, and he imagines God...that we lived before this life (imagine that), that we were spirits and he has God talk to these spirits, and he says: "I'm going to make a world not certain to be saved. A world the perfection of which shall be conditional merely. The condition being that each several agent does its own level best. By offering you the chance to take part in such a world, it's safety you see is unwarranted. It is a real adventure with real danger, yet it may win through. It is a social scheme of cooperative work genuinely done. Will you join the procession? Will you trust yourself, and trust the others enough to face this risk?"
I love that idea. That the success of this world is in some part dependent on us and how much we do. And I'm telling you right now: Paul Anderson did his part. This was a good man. In Jesus' name, Amen.
Note from Vickie: Christian, Paul's son, wrote, "Paul got to end his life from one breath to the next, talking to his wife and son around the same table where the Andersons ate and laughed since before I was born. It was the most gentle death imaginable, for a good and gentle man."
I have learned from Lavina that their kitchen table is a family heirloom and is over 100 years old. On the night Paul died, he, Lavina, and Christian were just sitting down at this table to have a cup of hot chocolate before going to bed.
|The world begins at a kitchen table. No matter what, we must eat to live.
The gifts of earth are brought and prepared, set on the table. So it has been since creation, and it will go on.
We chase chickens or dogs away from it. Babies teethe at the corners. They scrape their knees under it.
It is here that children are given instructions on what it means to be human. We make men at it, we make women.
At this table we gossip, recall enemies and the ghosts of lovers.
Our dreams drink cocoa with us as they put their arms around our children.
They laugh with us at our poor falling-down selves and as we put ourselves back together once again at the table.
This table has been a house in the rain, an umbrella in the sun.
Wars have begun and ended at this table. It is a place to hide in the shadow of terror. A place to celebrate the terrible victory.
We have given birth on this table, and have prepared our parents for burial here.
At this table we sing with joy, with sorrow. We pray of suffering and remorse. We give thanks.
Perhaps the world will end at the kitchen table, while we are laughing and crying, eating of the last sweet bite.
When Death Comes
by Mary Oliver[Note: Not read due to time constraints]
When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse
to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measle-pox
when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,
I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?
And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,
and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,
and each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
tending, as all music does, toward silence,
and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.
When it's over, I want to say all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.
When it's over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.
I don't want to end up simply having visited this world
When Great Trees Fall
By Maya AngelouWhen great trees fall,
rocks on distant hills shudder,
lions hunker down
in tall grasses,
and even elephants
lumber after safety.
When great trees fall
small things recoil into silence,
eroded beyond fear.
When great souls die,
the air around us becomes
light, rare, sterile.
We breathe, briefly.
Our eyes, briefly,
a hurtful clarity.
Our memory, suddenly sharpened,
gnaws on kind words
Great souls die and
our reality, bound to
them, takes leave of us.
dependent upon their
now shrink, wizened.
Our minds, formed
and informed by their
We are not so much maddened
as reduced to the unutterable ignorance
of dark, cold
And when great souls die,
after a period peace blooms,
slowly and always
irregularly. Spaces fill
with a kind of
soothing electric vibration.
Our senses, restored, never
to be the same, whisper to us.
They existed. They existed.
We can be. Be and be
better. For they existed.
From Sermon at St. Paul's
From Romans 8Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?
shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution,
or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors
through him that loved us.
For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life,
nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers,
nor things present, nor things to come,
Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature,
shall be able to separate us from the love of God,
which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Psalm 23The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
he leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul:
he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil: for thou art with me;
thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:
thou anointest my head with oil;
my cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
From John 11Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life:
he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:
And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.
Musical setting by Alan Astin of John 11:25.
The choir, organized and directed by J. Frederic Voros, included several members of the Jubilate Choir from Mount Tabor Lutheran Church, Salt Lake City.
I have been given an impossible assignment. I've been asked to talk about Paul's professional career, but have been given ten minutes rather than three hours. This means that no matter what I say, many of you will leave thinking, "How could she have left that out? So I claim no more than an old friend's attempts at a few highlights in what by any measure was a remarkable professional career.
After Princeton, he spent a couple of years working at an Orange County architectural firm. Paul then accepted a summer fellowship researching church architectural history at the LDS Church History Division. Other grants and fellowships followed, and by 1976, Paul had accepted a full-time job as the chief lieutenant to the redoubtable Florence Jacobsen, restoring LDS historic sites in Utah and the Eastern states.
During his career, Paul frequently found himself in the right place at the right time. He started working with Florence at the Church Arts and Sites Division just after the destruction of the Coalsville Tabernacle and the gutting of the Logan Temple. Those decisions had brought the Church a good deal of national criticism and local resentment, and Church leaders were finally willing to turn toward the path of honoring and preserving their heritage which Florence had long advocated.
In his eight years working on Historic sites, Paul, Florence and their talented team completed masterful restorations of many important sites, including the Newel K. Whitney store in Kirtland (for which Paul received a President's Award for Historic Preservation from President Reagan), the Brigham Young and Jacob Hamblin homes in St. George, the Peter Whitmer Home and Visitors Center in Fayette, New York, and, of course, that supreme monument to pioneer craftsmanship, the Manti Temple.
Paul and Florence were largely successful in their long-fought battle with the Church Missionary Department, to allow the guides at these sites to begin their presentations with specific information about the site itself before delivering the standard proselyting message. As Paul remarked in his 2015 oral history artfully conducted by Jesse Embry: "The value of a historic site is that you can get an insight into aspects of Church history in the place where it happened if the presentation there helps you to get that insight. If you want to give a gospel message, you probably ought to start with the historic site and then work into the gospel message. Otherwise, people sort of think they've been had." (p.3)
In 1984, Paul began work, under Director Florence Jacobsen, at the new Museum of Church History and Art. He helped design the interiors of the museum while it was being built, and performed the same service several years later for the BYU Museum of Art. He was Head Designer and Director of Exhibitions at the Church Museum from 1984 till 1992. I remember touring the museum a few months after it opened. It was a jaw-dropping experience. My husband, Dean, and I were excited to find museum exhibitions which were in every respect as beautiful, insightful and professional as those we had enjoyed in Boston and New York. Several of Paul's Church Museum shows won awards and other recognitions. I think Paul appreciated these honors, but what really inspired him was the opportunity to develop and achieve his vision, and his particular message, for each exhibition.
In 1992 Paul moved down to the newly opened BYU Museum of Art as Design Manager, and later as a curator/designer and finally, as Head of Exhibition Development. In my view, it was at the MOA that Paul's design brilliance came into full flower. In the short time I have today, I can only mention a few of his dozens of memorable shows. One of my favorites was his design for "The Empire of the Sultans," our wonderful Ottoman Art show. Entrances to each section of the show featured magnificent red and white pointed Ottoman arches, which opened into a wondrous array of tilework, carpets, calligraphy, ceramics and more. Through the arches of the main entrance, Paul placed a floor-to-ceiling photo of the domed ceiling of the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, which gave one the feeling of walking into a huge, vaulted space.
A smaller, but exquisite show a few years ago was titled "Windows on a Hidden World." It was a show of stunning eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Japanese woodblock prints. The entrance was punctuated with two elaborate, seven-foot-tall bronze Japanese lanterns, complete with dangling bells. The interior of the exhibition was a picture of elegant refinement. Simple, banistered, dark wood screens separated gallery sections, with plain wooden moldings framing the walls. You truly felt that you had entered a hidden world full of visual delights.
Paul's "Mormon Moderne," tracing the varied chapel and temple styles employed by the Church between the 1890s and the1950s was in every way a tour de force. Each of the hundreds of decisions that a designer-curator has to make for an exhibition, the thesis and organization, the color scheme, the fonts, the labels and section panels, the decorative enhancements, the choice of works and their placement; all were perfect. This was especially difficult since Paul had to find and borrow murals, photos, stained glass windows, a beautifully carved pulpit, chairs and other furniture, decorative elements like brick columns with decorated capitals, and many other artifacts from dozens of chapels, temples and storage areas around the country, and then figure out how to effectively display such disparate pieces. Several of us who participated in the exhibition have pledged to Lavina that we will support her in seeing that Paul's book based on the exhibition that was never quite ready for publication, will finally see the light of day.
Paul displayed endless creativity in materials used to enhance his exhibitions. You might remember the twelve-foot-high rough-barked pine logs that he used throughout the Smithsonian's "Lure of the West" show which we displayed during the 2002 Olympics. Imposing and distinctive as the pieces of art were, visitors were most impressed with the nine-foot tall, snarling grizzly near (borrowed from the Monte L. Bean Life Sciences Museum up on the hill) that flanked the entrance.
Paul's copious talents as an architect and designer would seem like enough for any single person to be blessed with. But Paul wasn't just a visual person. He could also write like an angel. He displayed this skill in the dozens of articles in a variety of journals, and his many conference presentations. But he also showed his skill as a wordsmith in his exhibition labels. His philosophy was that a label should concern itself with what people could see as they stood looking at a painting as opposed to its historical or theoretical background. Let me give you just one example of a label from our first big Maynard Dixon Exhibition:
Maynard Dixon Volcanic Cones (Boulder Nevada,)
1934, oil on canvas.
The stark, almost lunar landscape of southern Nevada spreads out before us in this light-filled painting. The diagonal thrust and sculpted surface of the volcanic cone suggest both ancient geological upheavals and the softening effects of millennia of wind and water. This impressive cone seems to be only part of a larger ridge—the foreground shadows suggest another outcropping behind us, while a dirt road leads up a slope on the right. The broad flat plain and horizontal lines of mountains and clouds in the distance imply an almost endless vista.
One of the keys to Paul's success in every professional endeavor was his mastery of narrative. He was a great story teller. He had an ear for small, human incidents that brought the larger account to life. One of my favorite Paul stories was about the artist LeConte Stewart as a young missionary in Hawaii. In his spare time, LeConte would set up his easel on the beach and paint. When the muralist for the new Hawaii Temple became ill and had to go home, the project director noticed Stewart working on the beach and, recognizing his talent, asked him to complete the temple murals. He assented, but said that since he was being released from his mission, would it be all right to bring over his fiancée and marry her? He gained permission, and, while he completed the murals, he and his new bride enjoyed a Hawaiian honeymoon. I'm sure that many of you can remember a favorite Paul Anderson story. They were one of the elements that made the history and architectural tours he conducted for the Mormon History Association and the BYU Museum of Art so popular.
Along with his "day job" at a museum, Paul also designed a good number of homes and commercial structures. While he was fully capable of producing buildings in the spare and sleek International Style taught to him at Princeton, his structures often displayed elements of the early modern schools, such as Arts and Crafts, and Vienna Succession, which he so admired. He often served as an architectural consultant for Ivory Homes and designed their stunning Salt Lake City headquarters with his own distinctive combination of Arts and Crafts elements.
Since professional jobs are those for which one receives compensation, I must mention Paul's lovely hymns, two of which we are singing today. I remember him telling me about receiving a royalty check of three cents one year for one of his hymns. The next year, the royalty more than doubled, and he got a check for eight cents! Happily, Paul never cared very much about money.
After he retired, Paul began a serious painting career. I think his best works were those depicting interesting architecture, and the landscapes of his beloved Lamb's Canyon and other natural settings. It would have been wonderful to see how his style developed over the coming decade.
I think that all of Paul's professional work reflected his joy in life, and his love for humankind. I'm confident I speak for all of us when I say how much we will miss that infectious smile, that hearty laugh, that quiet, penetrating insight. I bid him a temporary farewell from all of us here assembled. His like will not pass this way again.
The family has asked me to make this very gracious announcement:
After the service, we invite you to enjoy many of Paul's paintings and sketches which are on display in the cultural hall. Paul's family would like to share his artwork with individuals who knew him and appreciated his creativity. Any piece that has not already been reserved by his family will have a white card beneath it. If you feel a particular connection to the piece, we invite you to write your name and phone number on the card. Within the next few weeks, a recipient for each piece will be selected, and they will be distributed accordingly. Please note that pieces that do not have a white card beneath them have been reserved and are not available for distribution.
Brothers, sisters, family, friends. This has been a most unusual week. Shock has allowed Lavina and me to think of ourselves as "doing fine", unaware of the many things we are forgetting to do, people to thank, tasks to accomplish. It is a blessing of self-delusion. The best part is conversation: you can start talking anywhere in your stream of thought and drift off mid-sentence. It doesn't matter, the person you're talking to is barely listening anyway. I haven't been able to put 15 seconds of coherent words together since Friday night, so forgive me if the next 10 minutes aren't exactly attenuated lasers of eloquence. My father wrote many lyrics while sitting in that pew [pointing to the third pew back, north side of the chapel], bored by the speaker. I certainly hope no good lyrics come out of this meeting, but if some do, I'll try not to take it personally.
We've gathered here to say good-bye to Paul. I want to know how you do that. He wasn't the sort of man it was easy to forget in life. And, I have to say, death has changed him for the worse in this regard. I was here on Sunday, and was thinking what a jerk Paul has become since he died. Paraphrasing one of his favorite Bill Holm poems:Who does Paul think he is?
Of course I miss Paul, miss him the same way I might miss an imagined top stair of an unfamiliar staircase in the dark: the same betrayal of expectation, the same queasy-falling feeling in the stomach, the same jolt against reality. I miss his laugh, one I bet everyone here remembers because he was so often the first to see the humor in something, and because it was so genuine, happy, un-malicious. Even though I haven't lived at home for 20 years, I remember like yesterday how all through junior high and high school his laughter during the monologue of the Tonight Show would draw me sneaking downstairs in my pajamas for a few shared minutes, long enough for dino-grahams and strawberry milk.
I miss our travels together, where my wife and I, who had both recently participated in marathons, would exhaustedly lag behind him as he race-walked to the eighth church of the day, gesticulating energetically as he gossiped about the feuding 15th century architects and sculptors involved in this church as if they were personal friends. I remember him throwing himself onto a gondola in Venice with all the enthusiasm of a toddler at Disneyland. I remember his impassioned impromptu lectures at random spots in random art galleries around the world, where he talked about not just style, but the technique and subject with the enthusiasm and expertise we usually associate with football broadcasters; these always drew a crowd of eavesdroppers, ranging from the surreptitious to the blatant, because everyone could tell this man had seen something that woke his passion, and they wanted to see it too.
But it's the future where I miss him most. I miss the trip we'll never take to Sweden, whose potential itinerary we were kicking around ten minutes before he died. I especially miss all the churches he'll never drag us to, eyes wide as he stands in some sacred space older than America and solemnly intones, "This is really cool." I miss the times he and Marina would have set up easels together on our porch, and he'd teach her how to paint landscapes. I miss the house he'll never design for us, or so many other people. I miss the conversation we'll never have for the thirty-seventh time about a friend from high school once his mind started to go at age 88. I miss not being driven crazy on car trips as he read every single billboard, or he insisted on showing us the same slide show yet again.
So I ask again, how on earth are you supposed to say good-bye to someone embedded so far in the substrate of who you are?
The answer is simple: You don't. Not just because it isn't possible, but because it isn't right to let someone like that slip away. So my relationship with dead Paul is going to be different than with living Paul; that's fine, relationships change, but you work to keep the good ones, and this is one of the best. My relationship with Paul once meant knocking over enormous towers of paper towels and toilet paper following semi-monthly bulk store shopping. Later it meant late night Dino-grahams and milk, then endless puns during weekly phone calls, then trips together. As I look into this next stage of my relationship with Paul, I think it will mean more awareness of the extent to which I'm following his example.
I'll try to be more like him in how quick he was to see the funny side, and be genuinely delighted by it. His friends know how often he repeated a good joke, whether it was his or someone else's. These ran the gambit from basic puns to erudite and multilingual. I was often rescued from the brink of a boredom coma when Paul would write out widely spaced lyrics to the closing hymn, and challenge me to an illustrated pun-off. Based on the text of "O My Father", for the line "in thy mutual approbation" he topped my picture of a cat biting a loaf of bread to pieces (meow-chew-well: an event that happened often as he benignly tolerated my penchant for house pets), with a truly amazing picture of a monkey holding out a cape with an outline of the United States (the "ape-robe-nation"). Bad, right? The English language was insufficient to contain his pun-ishing sense of humor. I can still hear him telling me about zee tree French cats, cat un, deux, et trois, that went out in the leaky boat, and un deux trois quatre cinq. He generously translated this "joke" for Asian audiences: missionaries in Japan every day walk by an old woman scratching her legs; one day she isn't there and a man is in her place. They ask what happened, and he replies "Ichi ni san? Shi go" which, like its French counterpart, means "one, two, three, four, five."
Paul possessed amazing patience. He spoke to people he disagreed with on a deep fundamental level with the same, maybe even more, respect and courtesy than his friends. A world full of Pauls would have very different politics, and differences would be resolved in very different ways.
But I think the ideal I'll work hardest for, and the one he best exemplifies, was that Paul was a man who embodied kindness, in the way he treated friends, colleagues, enemies, and not least his wife, son, and daughter-in-law. Many of you know that Paul had snow-drifts of papers that were sometimes knee deep in his room and office. His computer desktop was no better, with more than 300 random files cluttering almost every available pixel. He called this his "horizontal filing system." When we began to impose our quaint notions of hierarchy and category on this constellation of chaos, I think it's amazing that almost the first document Marina opened was a one-page file with two quotations:
I see Jesus in every human being. I say to myself, this is hungry Jesus, I must feed him. This is sick Jesus, I must heal him…It is not how much we do, but how much love we put in the doing; it is not how much we give, but how much love we put in the giving. Let us do something beautiful for God. The dying, the cripple, the mental, the unwanted, the unloved—they are Jesus in disguise. — Mother Teresa
I shall pass this way but once; any good that I can do or any kindness I can show to any human being; let me do it now. Let me not defer nor neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again. — Etienne de Grellet
So let's not say good-bye to Paul. Instead, let's invite him to stay with us awhile, even if he's less talkative than he's been. That way, when the end comes for each of us, our minds may be full of such generous thoughts as those I read; and our friends will think they apply aptly to each of us, the way we think they apply to Paul. This I pray, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Brothers and Sisters, as we heard in our opening prayer, this has truly been a celebration of the life of Paul Anderson. We appreciate everyone in attendance. I was asked to share some remarks, I will keep them brief. In 2000, the members of the Whittier Ward were asked to write their testimonies, and we compiled those. I just want to share a brief excerpt from Brother Anderson's testimony, which I think exemplifies who he was. He starts by saying: "I am happy to be able to join my testimony with those of my friends and neighbors in the Whittier Ward at the end of the 20th century."
I love that beginning from Brother Anderson, because for me that is who he was. He was always thinking about others, about friends, neighbors. For those of us who had the opportunity to know him, it was always about the one for him, and that came across as genuine love and concern. I was in the hospital a couple of years back, and as a member of the high priests' group leaders, he visited, but then he followed that up with a personal visit. Ever since then when we would chat, his first question would be, "How are you doing? How is your health?"
He continues his testimony by saying: "I believe that God, our Heavenly Father, is real; that He is the Father of my spirit; that He knows and loves me and watches over me; and that He hears and answers my prayers. I believe that Jesus is the Savior of the World, in addition to my own personal savior who opens the door for my repentence and progress. The principles of His gospel have been central to the goals and ideals of my life. I believe that His gospel can bring happiness and peace to the world if people could understand and embrace it. I also believe in the reality of the Holy Spirit, who has at crucial times in my life filled my heart with reassurance of divine love and cared for me, even when my life was less-than-perfect, and my faith far from certain."
As we have heard today, Brother Anderson was a man of many talents, many attributes, great knowledge, but above all in my mind, he truly loved his fellow man. He embodied what a disciple of Jesus Christ is. I know that families are eternal. I know that we will have the opportunity to reunite with our loved ones. I tell my children that death is but a stage, and for those of us that remain here on earth, it's important that we continue to move forward, to do those things that will allow us to reunite with our loved ones in the life to come. And I share those thoughts with you in the life to come.
Our closing song will be "Sabbath Day" #148, which was written by Brother Anderson and the music by Brother Carson. The closing prayer will be offered by Paul's older brother, Lynn M. Anderson. I have also been asked by Sister Anderson to please allow the family to remain in the chapel while the rest of us exit, as was mentioned, to view the art in the cultural hall. There is also a luncheon for those who are invited; those who are viewing the paintings, we ask them to please be cognizant of that. And the final thing is that for those who will be part of the luncheon, there are flowers on the table, you are reminded to take those home with you. Thank you, brothers and sisters.
Our Father in Heaven, at the conclusion of this service, we're thankful that we could be gathered here to share our thoughts and memories of Paul Anderson. We're thankful for the gospel which brings us together, and for the strength that it gives to our lives. We ask thee as we go from here that we might remember some of the things that we have heard, that they might give us thoughts on how we might be better people as we go about our lives. And we ask these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Brahms' "O World, I Must Leave Thee," left unfinished at his death.