Never in my life have I been more grateful than I am tonight. Never. God has protected me through my time in England, in Honduras, and in Chicago. He guarded me during my trip to North Carolina. He blessed me with a group of kind and loving people at Wake Forest who welcomed me back to campus after a year of travel and adventure. For these simple truths and for everything that the Lord has given to me over the past year, I am very grateful.
In Oxford, as expected, I grew in wisdom and understanding. I thirsted for knowledge both academic and spiritual, and the abundant grace of God did not disappoint. Courses in Spanish sharpened my critical thinking skills, and tutorials in Christian theology fortified my ever-growing orthodoxy and love for Catholic thought. I can only hope to expand upon the enthusiasm for academics that my time in Oxford provided.
In Honduras, as expected, I grew in trust and in piety. Never before did I place all of my hope in God–that He would lead me away from evil, that he would bless my every moment. The children whom I taught and served were full of life despite their treacherous pasts and their relative economic poverty. They showed me what it means to look to heaven for guidance when the earth just doesn’t cut it.
In Chicago, as expected, I grew in friendship and in love. Seeing some old pals strengthened my resolve to grow closer to Christ through positive interactions with His people on earth. When we serve our friends and give of ourselves for them, we are participating in Jesus’ sacrifice for humanity. We grow closer to Him when we treat each other lovingly.
Now that I am in North Carolina once again for my senior year at Wake Forest, I think about my desires for this final term. What do I want more than anything else at this point in my life? I believe that I know the answer: to love and serve God by doing my schoolwork for His greater glory. And not only my schoolwork, but also my extra-academic activities.
May the Lord live through me this year. Pray for me and for all those students who are finishing up their undergraduate work this year!