Nov. 18, 2008

We salute Garrett Graham's gap year in China and the fine journalism of K. Leonard in The Collegian.

To live, eat, study, play, run and work with people so distant geograpically and culturally from one's own upbringing takes courage and a big outlook about living and existence.

It also gives hints of a creative and passionate desire to better understand human beings, particularly those who seem dramatically different from one's self. Indeed, it suggests a hope of effectively serving others, of contributing compassion and something of worth to a world that is groaning, beautiful and needy.

Toward people who seem strange or very different from us, whether far away or near, whether we agree with them or not, may we respectfully seek to listen to their life stories, to better understand and to enthusiastically appreciate them. What a happier, more peaceful world and group of people that will help us to be!

We commend the spirit and sustained effort of Garrett Graham and the enrichingly broad and deep human learning which he must have gained in China. Whereever we are, attitudinally he will inspire us to take trips in our own hearts and minds.

And, hats off to The Collegian's au courant substance!