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edu180atl: bill clarkson 11.1.12

Life tends to take unexpected turns! In today’s reflection, I can honestly say that the last two weeks have been like standing in front of high-velocity curve balls. Within my community there are students, families, colleagues, and even many in the general public who are hurting deeply, or they are confused, angry, curious and reflective. The odds are that none of the curve balls will be hit out of the park, and the real success might simply be in just standing in without falling down.

Clear to me is the realization that at such moments, it is the sheer force of demonstrated interdependence and mutual responsibility—the embrace of the community—that offers sustaining life to us all. I would say, also, that the sustaining support is not so much in words, advice, and presumed solutions and answers—rather, it is in a close “standing with, alongside one another.”

About the author: Bill Clarkson is the President of The Westminster Schools. In addition to his career as an educator and administrator, he is an ordained Episcopal priest who loves life.

note: today’s picture was selected by the edu180atl editorial team.

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5 Comments Post a comment
  1. Stephen G. Kennedy #

    Bill, you have many, many people standing with you. Many people. Thank you for a reflective, honest, and revealing post here. Very powerful.

    November 1, 2012
  2. As you indicate in your writing, keep the faith and surround yourself with people who will listen.

    Bob

    November 1, 2012
  3. Thank you, Bill, for your compassionate leadership.

    This quote from Friar Richard Rohr seemed appropriate:
    “Jesus walked the journey of faith just as you and I do. He did not have all the answers down pat beforehand…We like to imagine that Jesus did not flinch, doubt, or ever question God’s love. The much greater message is that in his humanity he did flinch, have doubts, and ask questions—and still remained faithful.”

    November 2, 2012
  4. Curve balls do follow a parabolic path, forcing us to pay close attention and sometimes shift our stance. The parables too follow the same trajectory. They don’t tell us where to stand, but rather, through the act of questioning, cause us the hearer to be caught or pulled into a personal relationship with the teller of the story. As a dear friend, also an Episcopal priest, once told me, “There can be no bystanders when it comes to the parable.”

    I can’t imagine what it’s like to face these curve balls, but as you gratefully acknowledge, the engagement of the community in “demonstrated interdependence and mutual responsibility” certainly doesn’t leave you alone on the plate.

    November 2, 2012
  5. martha sterne #

    Thanks, Bill, for standing with and alongside. Peace, Martha Sterne

    November 2, 2012

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