Cross and Anchors statue in foreground with snow covered campus

December 3, 2021

Friday of the First Week of Advent
By Rose Gryskevicz '96, Director of Engagement and Experience

 

Today’s gospel reading reminds me of my favorite hymn Amazing Grace and in particular the words “I was blind, but now I see.” Although I have been blessed with the physical gift of sight, I know for sure I walk around from time to time with blinders on, refusing to see anything except what is right in front of me. A global pandemic was something I never saw coming.

The pandemic caused a considerable amount of isolation, fear, loss, grief, and uncertainty. As a person of faith, I am called to see the blessings in all situations, but I must admit this was difficult for me to do for many months of the pandemic. The gospel reminds me of the eye-opening journey of the past 20 months. In March of 2020, we were told that we were going to work from home (for 2 weeks or so I thought). I immediately discovered some very short-sighted blessings while working from home: I loved my Ugg slippers; my commute to work was approximately 20 steps; my living expenses decreased considerably; there was no need to shop for work clothes since leggings became my daily work clothing; and I didn’t have to drive on snowy or icy roads.

But something bigger occurred and it led me to reflect on and evaluate what matters the most to me. The pandemic reinforced the people, the situations, and the communities that matter the most to me. I missed spending time with my family. I missed getting together with my friends. I missed the King’s community. Although we were still working, I felt disconnected on zoom meetings (I still do!). I missed those unexpected conversations that happen when you walk across campus. I missed popping into someone’s office or someone stopping by my office to say hello. I missed in-person events with our alumni and friends of the College. And I missed seeing the students walking to and from campus or sitting outside on a beautiful day. I missed the life of the campus. I missed the King’s community.

I recall the first time I stepped onto King’s campus. From day one I knew I found a place where I belonged. In fact, I remember thinking that I am going to be a part of the King’s community for a very long time. I’m not sure why I felt that way since initially I came to King’s for the sole purpose of completing my degree. Fast forward 30 years, King’s has been and continues to be an important community in my life.

Almost a year and a half from being sent to work from home, King’s called me back to the office. It is evident in the few short months back on campus that the King’s community is truly “better together.” We learn together, celebrate together, pray together, cry together, and comfort one another in difficult times.

My relationship with God, family, friends, and the King’s community are proof in my life that I am better together.
During Advent, as we prepare for the birth of Jesus, I pray that my heart remains open, and my sight remains clear on the many communities that I treasure.

To read today's readings and all readings this Advent Season, please visit https://bible.usccb.org/.