Roy and Carol Christensen have been instrumental in enabling the Museum of Art to fulfill its mission of helping patrons gain a heightened appreciation of others and their ideas. The Museum is grateful for their involvement, especially in helping the Museum to expand their collection and host exhibitions.

Roy and Carol met while attending Brigham Young University. In the midst of the Korean War, Roy was unsure if he would be able to serve a mission due to the cut-back of full-time missionaries. However, his bishop informed him of a Church policy which allowed one missionary per ward to go. Excited to serve, Roy accepted his call to serve in Denmark. Learning Danish would prove helpful throughout his life. While he was in Denmark, Carol earned her teaching degree from Brigham Young University. After Roy returned home, the two were quickly reunited and married one month. Carol taught in schools while Roy pursued his education in accounting. Eventually, they moved to California where he opened his own accounting firm.

Raising eleven children, the Christensens were sure to teach their children about the importance of service. Roy and Carol recall hearing a woman recount her story of how her family wished to adopt a child but were unable to financially. After she expressed her disappointment in not being able to adopt, the next day she received an envelope full of money—the exact amount they needed to adopt this child. The woman expressed her gratitude and said that because of this anonymous act, their family’s lives were changed. Roy and Carol were deeply touched by this story. Inspired to be like the anonymous person who helped the woman, they constantly strive to help those in need. Roy commented, “This example of anonymous kindness inspired us to regularly give in a similar fashion. Giving to others has been fun for us and a blessing for our family.”[1]

It has been fun and a blessing for the Museum to work with the Christensens. They have generously donated funds for a few works to be added to the Museum’s permanent collection, including Angels Entertaining the Holy Child by Marianne Stokes and The Twelve Year Old Jesus in the Temple by Ernst Zimmerman.  However, one of their greatest involvements was their participation in helping to obtain the pieces for one of the Museum’s most popular exhibitions, “Sacred Gifts: The Religious Art of Carl Bloch, Heinrich Hoffman, and Frans Schwartz” that was shown in November 2013. Utilizing Roy’s ability to speak Danish and Carol’s love of art, the couple was instrumental in helping the museum borrow several of the artworks. The exhibition was extremely well-received and attended.

[1] https://www.ldsphilanthropies.org/byu/news-features/an-act-of-generosity-changed

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