Wellspring Ritual Eases Separation of Students, Families


There were a few moist eyes at the Holy Family Chapel on Friday, as incoming students bid farewell to their families to continue their fall orientation.

After an invocation by Juana Hernandez SAS'14, Denise Dailey SAS'14 sought to put the new students' minds at ease. "Many of you may be feeling nervious," she said. "But many within and outside this chapel are more than willing to help you in your journey."

The senior chemistry major said her time at CNR turned her from a timid, quiet student into "a brave soul." She also credited the College's liberal arts curriculum for opening her up to many fields of study, despite her focus on the sciences.

Dailey said she has also rejuvenated her spirituality in her time here, as a peer minister and through service trips with Campus Ministry. A trip bringing aid to tornado-ravaged Joplin, Missouri, in 2011 taught her, she said, "to never underestimate the power of one little action."

The ritual also included performances of song, poetry, and dance, and a reading from St. Angela Merici.

Students and their loved ones, in turn, gave each other blessings before they parted ways. "May the autumn leaves carpet beneath your feet and the angels lead you through the class day maze," the one for students begins.

And students said to their loved ones: "May God strengthen you these days when we are apart, for you have strengthened me with your spirit all my years. ..."

Finally, students and their families came up and lit candles to signifiy a new beginning and their joining a new family.