Day 1 of orientation is done! Over! Finito! It was pretty basic and now I find myself, in my dorm room, feeling kind of bored. I know that my grad student career has officially started and that I should ease into it but I feel like I’m a rocket, geared up and ready to go. I bet my enthusiasm will fade over the next few days.
Today started with an orientation on housing and security. The overall theme is that we’re all adults, we should act like it, and we should not leave wallets in our car. ¬†I think I’ll be okay one that one. ¬†Dinner was a small potluck lovingly thrown together by members of the two local Lutheran congregations. ¬†I met several students – a few from the north east, a few young married couples, a few folks I’ve met before in NYC, and a young man who was originally training to be a RCC priest in Liberia but is now exploring his options (and really likes Martin Luther). ¬†There’s a good mix of age groups here and about 50/50 male and female.
After dinner, we had our first worship service as a community. ¬†It contained the Rite of Welcome ¬†where we all responded, three times, “Teach me, O Lord, your ways.” ¬†After that, we jumped into the hymn Praise to the Lord, Almighty. During the second verse, it hit me that I really was here and that I’m really doing this. ¬†Even with the candidacy process, the acceptance letters, the scholarships – all of that was a prelude to this moment. ¬†Even though I was on this path, it was still not 100% tangible. ¬†But now it is. ¬†This really is happening.
After communion, I noticed that there were crumbs on the floor and for most of the sending song, I just stared at them. ¬†I’m still trying to get use to how I handle crumbs. ¬†Some folks care, some don’t. ¬†I remember visiting a class at another seminary where, when the professor mentioned crumbs being thrown willy nilly, everyone in the class groaned and had a heart attack. ¬†I know I’m not at that point but I do know that I’m very aware of what happens to the bits of the consecrated host after communion. ¬†I figure that this will be one of the many questions I might just spend too much thinking on while I’m here.
Worship ended and we were sent to another introduction class in a room with no AC. ¬†From one sweltring chapel to a humid as all hell room was not really I had planned. The President of LTSP and the Dean both made a little speech. We met some faculty members and our Introduction to Public Theology: Prologue course gave a short introduction. ¬† And, with that, day one was done.
Oh. If anyone reading this knows where there is a dollar store in Mt Airy, I would appreciate if you could fill me in. ¬†And if it’s within walking distance from LTSP, that would be even better. ¬†Someone recommended me one that was 3 miles away. ¬†Even though I’m in the “city”, this is still car country it seems.