munk writes: In light of the tragic events of Tuesday, September 11, the
University will suspend classes from 10:00 a.m. to Noon
tomorrow, Wednesday, September 12, to provide the University
community with a common period for reflection and mourning.
In Meditation 17, John Donne reflects on the experience of a world shattered:
“Who casts not up his eye to the sun when it rises? But who takes off his eye from a comet when that breaks out? Who bends not his ear to any bell which upon any occasion rings?
But who can remove it from that bell which is passing a piece of himself out of this world? No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main? Any man’s death diminishes me, because I
am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.”
This tragedy affects us all. Some of us have lost family, friends, colleagues. We have all lost fellow human beings. Our world has been impoverished by this terrible loss.
It will take time to make the world and our lives whole again, but there are ways in which we can begin the process of healing.
Tomorrow morning, the University’s schools will provide locations around the Grounds that will be available to the University community between 10 a.m. and Noon for quiet meditation, group discussion, and perhaps a time for us to assert our common belief in the dignity of human life and the horror of terrorism. Old Cabell Hall Auditorium and
the Chapel will be open in the morning. Notices about other sites will be posted on the University’s Web home page. We urge you to participate in at least one of these observances.
Also, buses will be available throughout the day tomorrow to take students from the University to Fashion Square Mall for a Virginia Blood Services blood drive. Buses will depart
from McCormick Road in front of Peabody Hall on the hour from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., returning on the half hour until 7:30 p.m. Please note that the buses will transport only as many persons as VBS has the capacity to accommodate at each hour.
Finally, please stay here unless urgent family concerns compel you to travel to the Washington area or to New York. Disaster relief workers need time and open roads to do their work, and at best travel is hazardous at this time.
We stand together in times of crisis. Each of us feels profound distress at this time. All of us know others who need our compassion and human concern.
John T. Casteen III