Seller Story: Dr. Robert H. Schuller – Boulder, CO

“Dad was considered Hollywood’s pastor because he came on the air when few other ministers were using the television medium for communication. He was so believable and approachable about faith that people trusted him. Celebrities wanted to worship in private so others wouldn’t gawk and bother them in the brick and mortar church. They loved Dad.

His library was where our family gathered on Christmas morning. Many of the items in this sale dressed that atmosphere. The leather club chairs were loved by all, including the grandkids who would tilt them back so that the wheels stuck to the side and the “back” of the chair became the seat flush to the floor. The wingback chairs flanked his desk where his letter openers and silver plate phone covers would live. Calls from U.S. Presidents, correspondence with church matters, many of his letters with Billy Graham and celebrities were read and kept in this area.

We could not go to a dinner out without multiple people approaching for a handshake, a hug, an autograph. Many times, we just wanted Dad to ourselves. Once, we were at the San Bernardino mountains and my sister and I disguised him in a Russian hat, big sunglasses, and an oversized parka hoping we could walk the shops in private. People still knew him, and we all had a great laugh because he was a bit embarrassed at his get-up.

He had privacy overseas, and this was where he could peruse antique shops and began collecting his chattel. Celebrity life is challenging but it’s also very rewarding, particularly when you are able to be there, spiritually and emotionally, for others who want access to spirituality but who have a hard time trusting the motives of the public [or being taken advantage of because of their fame, status, or wealth]. He was a safe place for high-profile people to go to with questions and Dad would go to them when they were not “presentable” for the public — when they were sick or dying. Dad’s life was a privileged one, not because of his access to fame and success, but because of his access to those moments when people need to be known and heard and hovered over, so that loneliness and the fear don’t alienate them from God.” –Carol Milner, daughter

Seller Story: Dr. Robert H. Schuller – Boulder, CO
Seller Story: Dr. Robert H. Schuller – Boulder, CO
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Seller Story: Dr. Robert H. Schuller – Boulder, CO

Your father counseled many politicians and U.S. Presidents, some of their letters and photos are in this sale. How did he balance politics and faith?

Dad believed that, professionally, he had to remain apolitical. He had his private political convictions but believed he had to remove that in his spiritual position. My father was a very intelligent man so politicians valued his insights that were backed by faith, but processed through a keen and curious mind.

He officiated Hubert Humphrey’s funeral and the funeral of Corretta Scott King; he was seated beside Hillary Clinton when Bill gave the state of the union address in 1995 and he encouraged Bill to reach out to Dole (noted in one of the framed letters) to find bipartisan resolve.

Did you get to meet any celebrity friends of your father?

I recall being about 5 when Burl Ives came to meet Dad. He was my favorite then because he was Santa Claus! When I was 13, I had a motorcycle accident that put me in the hospital for 8 months. During that time, John Wayne telephoned me in the hospital before he penned a note to me, “Be Happy, Carol, You are Loved!” That became the title of one of my father’s best-selling books. During my hospital stay, baseball players like Tommy Lasorda, Steve Garvey, and others from the Dodgers came to cheer me up. When they went to the pennant that year, Dad and I went into the dugout and helped with the champagne pour – over the tops of our heads!

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