Library’s Bible display exhibits university’s core values
October 12, 2010
By Darla Martin Tucker
As La Sierra University enters a new school year, its library is exhibiting a display intended to focus on and celebrate the foundational source for the school’s spiritual beliefs.
The library recently announced the opening of its Bibles exhibit, a total of 38 Bibles and related books housed in three glass cases near the library’s entrance. The grouping includes a two-volume facsimile of the famous Gutenberg Bible, the original of which was produced in the 1450s in Germany as the first major book printed with a moveable type press.
“The library is all about books and knowledge and nothing represents that better, especially in a Christian context, than the Bible,” said Library Director Kitty Simmons. “We thought that sharing the importance of the Bible, one of our core values, with students would be the perfect way to start out a new school year.”
While the library has previously displayed the Gutenberg Bible copy, this is the first time that Simmons has devoted the entire display area to Bibles. The idea took root this summer when Simmons read articles in the Adventist Review about the “Follow the Bible Initiative“ and the Andrews Study Bible, she said. Andrews University published the Study Bible this year. It is the newest among the Bibles on the display at La Sierra. The display also includes Bibles in foreign languages and The Remnant Study Bible, published in 2009 with Ellen G. White comments and references.
The Gutenberg Bible facsimile volumes were published in 1961and donated to the library by the Southeastern and Southern California Conferences and the Southern and Southeastern California Book and Bible Houses. Simmons said the edition, limited to a printing of 1,000 sets, was produced by Pageant Books (New York) and was only the second Gutenberg facsimile ever published.
“The Gutenberg Bible was not only an important theological milestone, but also introduced the age of the printed book and was noted for its artistic features. In an era when student attention is taken up with all things digital, this exhibit is a reminder that much value can still be found on the printed page,” Simmons said. “By viewing the Gutenberg Bible facsimile, students can see firsthand one of the most important books ever published in the world. Contemplating the beauty and significance of this work is an inspirational experience.”
The library display allows students to “see how universal the Bible is, and how many different versions are available here at the library,” said graduate English major Kendra Kravig. She works in the library as a circulation department assistant.
The famed Gutenberg is Kravig‘s favorite among the Bibles on exhibit. “I can't read it because it's in Latin, but I have a fondness for antique books. You don't have to understand the words to appreciate the delicate craft that went into its construction,” she said.
PR Contact: Larry Becker
Executive Director of University Relations
La Sierra University