The Anniversary of the Campus Shut-down

Date: March 11, 2021

The first commentary about COVID-19 was written in January 2020. The first case in Alexandria was a seminarian who was singing in the choir. The Seminary was closed on this date last year; all classes went online; worship was held on Zoom; and all employees were required to either work remotely or via Zoom.

Dr. Lisa Kimball provided a powerful reflection on the significance of this anniversary in her sermon yesterday. Do please watch the video. And Dr. Marty Burnett reflects on the “missed year” in the latest issue of The Journal of the Association of Anglican Musicians, describing a missed farewell as she moved from Trinity Cathedral, Omaha, to Virginia Theological Seminary. She writes movingly, “Plans to visit family were repeatedly postponed. I long to hold my one-year-old granddaughter for the first time.” As she notes, it is right and proper that we pause on this anniversary to remember and grieve. It has been a year of anxiety, loss, pain, and suffering.

Let us all offer to God today our stories of this past year. Ask God to be present in our pain. And pray that as the journey continues we might see God’s grace in this moment.

The Very Rev. Ian S. Markham, Ph.D.
Dean and President

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