Being a lover of art, English, theology, and history, I love the idea of seeing past voices still alive in the present through their respective works of art, books, and music and how a combination of intellectual and emotional impulses guided them all to accomplish what they created with excellence, craftsmanship, dedication, and vision. For instance, I believe I could stand in front of all of Bernini’s statues in the Borghese Galleria, or Obata and Hiroshege’s respective woodcut art, and Michelangelo’s Moses, Pieta, and David for days on end, and then come back for more days, and continually experience pure amazement at the vibrant idealism, scope, motion and pure beauty of these works of art. All creative people like Bernini, Obata, Hiroshege, and Michelangelo are, I believe, similar to the Old Testament prophets who had energetic ideas, principles, feelings, clear-eyed vision, and insights about the redemptive beauty of human action in creating something that is good and beautiful that stands the test to time. That distilling, embodying essence is a palpable architectural reality on the University Maine campus where many of the buildings are the enduring legacy of our 120-year history, and that our fraternal presence is here to stay.
But, for the most part, I genuinely admire these artists because they remind me of many of our fraternal brothers’ who had a driving love, energy, and imagination to coax an image of the good in their head into full expression in their academic service for generations of University of Maine students. These Q.T.V - Omega Mu brothers incarnated the substance of what Winston Churchill pithily asserted, “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” They lived their lives in the house and in the years beyond with a sense of responsibility, a sense of adventure in caring about the larger questions of meaning, and then faithfully gave their time and service to the University of Maine, keeping faith with the university and QTV and Omega Mu. They each understood that achievement comes through several channels: discipline, faith, and love. To roughly paraphrase Paul Tillich, these QTV and Omega Mu brothers had the “Courage to be” and to be it well in their unstinting service. Using a range of intellectual, social, emotional, intuitive and reasoning skills, these QTV and Omega Mu brothers stepped into our university community and placed their hands on their respective vocational plow and turned many furrows with sturdiness and keenest of mind, adding good to the commonweal of our university, all the while maintaining an active role in our brotherhood. The deep-rooted and long-eyed historic presence of our QTV and Omega MU brothers can be seen in many eponymously named ivy-clad buildings and sites all over the University of Maine campus, and there are many other buildings that were either designed or built by our brothers, and that is something that we cannot help but be proud and grateful. That requires no embellishment. These buildings reflect our fraternal past as they serve students in the present, and they will continue to serve generations of University of Maine students into the future. We can smile at our enduring, ivy-clad architectural art on the Maine campus and College Avenue. If that is excessive Omega Mu pride, so be it.
Phi Gamma Delta - Not for College Days Alone!
Chip Chapman, ‘82
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