Last night, as an estimated 700 to 800 students crowded into the chapel to remember their fellow student, to mourn his death and to comfort one another, you heard Father Jerry, Dr. Coppola and me tell you that you are beautiful and amazing. We did not exaggerate. Looking out at you as you filled every seat, lined the walls and crowded into the vestibule, we were reminded of what community really means.
My email has been flooded with messages from parents – another important component of the Sacred Heart family. They offered up prayers and condolences to the family and to the students, faculty and staff here on campus. They expressed gratitude for our quick communication that allowed them to get in touch with their children to talk, to comfort, to tell them how much they are loved. One family even offered their home as a getaway should the family want to take advantage of it. Our community is truly special.
It’s unfortunate that it so often takes a tragedy to remind us of what we have. But as we grieve the terrible loss of one who left us much too soon, we have also been reminded that we are a loving, giving and supportive community. I thank each and every one of you for your support and comfort – for lifting each other up and for lifting me up in this time of sadness.
I had intended to write today about a number of exciting things that happened on campus this week, but that can wait a few days. Today is for mourning, for remembering the one we lost, for tears and prayers – and for being grateful for this rainy, dreary day and all that life has to offer.
God bless you.