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Hoops Jumpin'

Weather couldn't dampen our excitement visiting the Big Old Seminary for the admissions interview. 

After picking up Heart Of My Heart at her office, we lunched at a local eatery before venturing to the Holy Hill.  I used the time waiting for our meals to arrive to review the materials in my packet and we considered what, if any, questions we might ask. 

With the state of the nation's economy, even the BOS was feeling its sting.  The Trustees recently directed the Dean to implement changes which lead to restructuring departments, phased retirement packages, delaying hiring decisions, and, unfortunately, layoffs.  "March Madness" was upon us with the start of the NCAA Tourney, and I imagined a blue-chip player being recruited by the best schools in the land.  Certainly one consideration before signing a letter of intent would be to get some assurances the coach(es) mentoring the player and leading the program will be around for the duration.  That's a fair question to ask.  Also, since I'm taking the prep course for the GREs, I wanted to ask what they consider regarding results.

We were calm and excited as we drove to the HH.  As we walked into the admin building, a young man approached to ask if we were who we are.  T, a senior seminarian from North Carolina and two months removed from graduation, was our escort and would join us for the meeting.  I'd remembered him from one of the more memorable skits offered during a Variety Show capping off the Conference on Ministry "open house" weekend.  We went upstairs and I ran into M, another seminarian I know (his wife works for GHI where M and I completed our CPE work).  We settled in a lounge area and waited for the faculty members conducting the interview.  While we chatted, the Dean walked out.  Seeing him, we all stood, and when he saw me, he approached and asked "Haven't we met?"  I reminded him we had spoken briefly when he presented "Prayer and Quantum Physics" at our Monday night Lenten program.  He is a gracious man, and he made us both feel very welcome.

Shortly thereafter, the faculty folks arrived.  JY is an Associate Prof of New Testament and KS is a Professor of Theology.  Finally assembled, the five of us walked to a small room where I ended up sitting next to a system printer/copier.  This past weekend, I had asked our young priest at Grace about his interview experience; he equated it to meeting with the Committee on Priesthood:  They'll ask about history, call, and academic abilities.  (Thank you, P - that's exactly what they did).  We sat in a circle for what felt like a comfortable, easy-going Q&A chat for 45 minutes.    

They seemed pleased with my life experience, the time and ministries in/for the church, courses I've been taking at NOVA (and the reasons why) and that I was preparing for the GREs.  My application will not be complete until my GRE scores are in (after late April).  They asked 'why this seminary?' and for any thoughts I had about focusing my studies at seminary.  I talked about our connection, how HOMH and I met through our fathers' experience at the BOS 35 years ago, and the relationship we've forged over time.  Regarding a specific course work plan, I haven't focused on that.  Yet.  I shared the Bishop's grand praise of the seminary, Dean, faculty and staff and his endorsement that I school there.  I added the faculty intros during the COM were my favorite part of the weekend.  

When my two questions received thoughtful responses which were sincere and much appreciated, they'd heard enough from me.  Then they learned HOMH is a regular evening Lay School student who is learning about 'Bad Girls in the Bible'.

Laughter signaled the end and we wrapped up.  As we walked to the car, it already felt like we belong there.  For me, there was a sense I'd finally moved beyond seeing seminary as a hope.  I need to knock out the GREs, and everyone who loves me should pray without ceasing.  Keep them comin'.  God is leading us there.  We'll be there soon.

I should start thinking and praying about curriculum requirements and what I want to do in seminary.  Soon.


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Mar. 23rd, 2009 04:24 pm (UTC)
I think you should promote the Big 'ol Seminary
to the Big 'ol Solemn Seminary. After all, never forgo a chance to create an acronym!
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )