Visiting with Dean George Back
My interview with Dean George Back (pictured) at St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral was very intriguing.
Stepping back in time with him was like a history lesson in itself.
Back is retiring from the dean’s post after 28 years.
What intrigued me the most was Back’s reflections about the time after the Oklahoma City bombing. I don’t think I had questioned a faith leader about how they themselves coped with the tragedy. Many faith leaders across the metro and state were called upon to help their congregations and communities come to terms with the senseless loss of so many lives. And how do you do that and not be affected yourself, to some degree?
Well, Dean Back shared exactly how. He said he never lost faith but he did witness the struggles of many others who were trying to come to grips with the tragedy.
As we sat in the quiet, peaceful sanctuary of St. Paul’s, I wasn’t surprised at Back’s depth of emotion as he described the waves of feelings that washed over him in the middle of the night back in those first days and weeks after the bombing.
I was very grateful that he shared that with me, and with all of our readers (because I put that in the story in today’s Oklahoman). I think it says a lot about Dean Back as a clergyman and as a human being. By all accounts, he has been a humble and gracious leader and he will be missed as leader of the downtown cathedral.
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