First, thank you. It has been a surreal, shocking, and emotionally draining day. The support received literally from around the world has been comforting to our students, faculty and staff. I am reminded once again of Jesus' words "...where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them" (Mt. 18:20). Social media helped us to realize that we are part of a family of faith that knows no physical boundaries. Prayer is a powerful tool and was certainly felt.
All of our students are safe. Those students who were unable to go home have been set up in housing for the weekend. They are in good spirits.
I also found the words of this evening's evening prayer comforting. From Psalm 135 we prayed, "Praise the Lord for the Lord is good." As I begin to reflect on today, my thoughts are on the examples of Christ at work throughout the day: in the law enforcement working so tirelessly to protect us; in the efforts of the University staff who worked so hard during the evacuation to make sure it was calm, orderly and that students felt safe throughout; in the staff and volunteers from the Town of Dartmouth who worked to make the students feel safe and welcome at Dartmouth High; and, again, the outreach of prayers and support from so many.
My prayers continue for the students, for the victims of Monday's attack, for all those involved in the search in Boston and of course, and of course that the Gospel message of faith, hope and love will take root in our world.
As of right now, the 1PM Mass this Sunday on campus has been cancelled. We will make a decision about the 7PM as soon as we know more about when the campus will reopen. Students should feel free to contact me at anytime they wish to either through Facebook or my cell (774-994-7457). As a priest assigned to UMass Dartmouth, you are my first concern and responsibility, do not hesitate to let me know how I can be of service, even just to be someone you can vent at.
I have always been humbled by this responsibility as well as very proud of UMD. That pride was reaffirmed today.
Proud to be UMD!