Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Letter to my Theology 1120 Students

It’s over, and Hallelujah! I am just about to turn in my grades. Yes, even some professors celebrate the end of the semester. I wanted to take a few minutes and reflect on the past semester.

First let me thank all of you for a really great Fall 04 semester, at least as far as I am concerned. In retrospect I really feel good about the work we all accomplished. I know that many of you think that the course was ridiculously difficult, and that the blog project to improve the world was a waste of time. Most students did a very good and impressive job, and there were about 15 students who blew me away with the scope of their project. I honestly feel that the world really is a better place because of all of your work. Some students did great projects but had a hard time keeping up with the writing, while a few did a great job with the writing but really didn’t do too much to improve the world. In any event, the expectations for that assignment were awesome, and hopefully the rest of your academic endeavors here at Xavier will seem easy because of this. If you kept up with the blog assignments, you wrote 2000 words per week for 15 weeks. That in itself is amazing. I hope you also learned that it is difficult to change the world. I still feel that by and large the world is a pretty bad place and I see injustice and suffering all around. But I hope in your lives you will work hard to create change for the better whenever you get a chance. I’m a big fan of Gandhi’s quotation “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” Remember when we read in Amos 3 that Israel, because of divine election, had greater responsibility than the nations around it. Similarly, I believe that you as future Xavier University graduates have a greater responsibility to improve the world. I expect great things from you.

A few students commented that the final exam was too difficult. I want to point out that one student scored 100 on the exam, and many scored in the 90s. Unfortunately for me, there were several scores in the 50s, and I don’t feel like I was able to motivate those students into doing the work necessary for a higher grade.

The movies turned out excellent. I’ll work on editing these over the break, and will post them in early January. Check back then to my homepage and there will be a link to them.

In closing, I think the students here are what makes Xavier so special. Thanks for your hard work, perseverance, maturity, and friendship. Have a nice holiday, remember there is more to life than money, and feel free to stop by or drop me an email now and then. Just don’t send me those stupid chain letters about Jesus.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great quote from Gandhi.

Did you know that Samuel addressed GW Bush? 1Sam 8:10-18. Notice the outcome of our election in v19.

Don't worry about the spread as you can lead a student to knowldge but you can't make them think.

"In that day you will cry out because of your king whom you have chosen for yourselves, but the Lord won’t answer you in that day"