Saturday, August 25, 2007

USF: New Beginnings 2007-08

Friday evening the incoming freshman at the University of Saint Francis had their orientation cookout. It was a time for families, students, faculty and staff to get to know one another. It was time for the parents to meet some of the student leaders on campus.

The picnic was under a gigantic white, three tiered tent next to Mirror Lake.

On one side there was the southern half of the lake with its island, the Campus Ministry building and beyond it Bishop D’Arcy Football Stadium. On the northern side were the Bass Mansion and the newly acquired buildings across the road. Next to the tent were the John Paul II Center and the clock tower.

The setting was beautiful, the food great, the fellowship lively. And the weather, well, the weather was feeling over looked and decided to become noticed.

So, an enormous storm blew in and the tent had to be evacuated. All the speakers and audio equipment were quickly brought in, tables were torn down and people, all the people were directed into the Pope John Paul II Center! All the speeches were abandoned, The close camaraderie that was so valued was stretched as groups met in various rooms throughout the Center. And yet, it was a wonderful success. Families spent time with students, friends and wandering staff and faculty. Behind a protective wall of glass the storm on the lake provided some spectacular entertainment. The planned bonfire that was to be the hallmark of the evening was replaced by movies and snacks in Bonzel Hall. What was obvious was that people were enjoying the evening. If you looked down the hall of the PJPII Center, or over the balcony to the first floor or toward the community space in front of the memorial wall everybody was smiling and laughing. Even the staff that had to move quickly to save the day were happy. I was reminded of the song, How Can I Keep From Singing? This was a great beginning!

How Can I Keep From Singing

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