Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Quiet Descends

Quiet is descending on the AU campus as finals are completed. The anticipation, pleasures, and dissappointments of the holday season await. Before we know it the new semester will begin and the question of the day will not we "where are you spending your holdays?" but "how were your holidays?"

I am still in my office - a 9:30. I don't know if there is an accepted definition of a workaholic, but I suspect I qualify. I do get great satisfaction from my work and feel it makes a difference - usually - but I have never been particularly good at keeping it in balance with the other parts of my life. Probably it is best to simply accept that this is what is so and be comfortable with it - which I usually am.

It was Christmas pagent time at Leeds Church in Hume Virginia, with which regular readers of this blog will be familiar. The important thing about events at Leeds is that talent is not required for participation. Only enthusiasm and a willingness to serve. The pagent included about 40 children of all ages - amazing for a relatively small congregation. Looking at them gathered before the altar, we could all see the next generation and be hopeful that this unique community, founded in 1759 would outlive those of us who belong to be grandparent generation.

One of my very best staff members leaves today and I want to share an excerpt from my acknowledgement of him or her. I typically don't include names in my blog and won't do so in this instance.

Farewell to a unique human being....
This holiday season will conclude the service of an exceptional CTE staff member....

[He/she] insisted that achieving CTE’s mission could not come at the expense of staff members’ well being. [She/he] ensured that the logistics of CTE events matched the quality of the subject-matter being presented – and much more. In the words of one Management Group member, “when this person entered a room, you knew [he/she] was a force to be reckoned with.”

The opportunity to know and work with [this person] has been a gift and a privilege. We thank him for [his/her] dedication, [his/her] wit, [his/her] energy, his competence, [his/her] creativity and [his/her] commitment to CTE’s mission. The ideals [she/he] exemplified, combining the highest standard of professionalism with fundamental humanity and a compassionate heart, will continue as a beacon for all of us.

We will miss [her/him] and we will not forget him.

To those of you traveling this holiday season, I pray for your safe arrival and return. To all my neighbors, faculty colleagues, staff, friends and members of the human race... may peace and joy be with you

and those you love

and those who love you.


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