The Rev. Casey dunsworth

serves as Associate Campus Pastor to the Belfry, the Lutheran-Episcopal Campus Ministry to UC Davis

and as Program Director for LEVN, the Lutheran Episcopal Volunteer Network.

Back in Berk

It's been a few days since I returned to Berkeley for the school year, and the rest of my friends and classmates are trickling in. Some of us spent the last three days helping to orient the new, first-year students. This has, of course, been a blast. There are 31 of them -- which is crazy for our mini school --  and a lot of them are really rad. Some of them are old and boring, and some of them are young and geeky but mostly they are cool.

It's nice to be back here and just have some time to hang out and move in slowly and sleep a fair amount and not spend hours every day reading textbooks! Though I have to say, I have some sweet classes on the agenda and will have some rad textbooks to read. And, also, it's sort of unreal to have nothing to do and I'm already a little bored. But I'm trying to savor the lack of stress as best I can.

I want the point of this post to be about how it's wonderful to be back but that a lot has changed. We have two whole classes of people we've never met -- the aforementioned first-years and then a whole crop of fourth-years, last year's interns. All of last year's second- and fourth-years are gone -- off interning or graduated. Their absence is palpable. And some of our class are gone. Bill went back to the seminary he studied at before he came to us. And Sean decided to take some time off of school altogether.

Some of my classmates got engaged over the summer. Or married!
Some got divorced.
Some had babies!
One of our professors lost his wife, suddenly.
One of our administrators was diagnosed with cancer.

It's so funny because this is such an insular community that any changes are drastic. I'm the same. My outside life is the same. I'm so excited about all the new faces. I'm doing that thing that I do where I'm imaging which of them are going to be my dear friends forever. The first BBQ on Monday night brought back all our memories from last year -- I struggle to believe that we were even the same people that night as we are today. We sat down in our first class -- Steed's OT class, of course -- and were scared out of our minds right off the bat. It's almost laughable, now. But we did it together. And I can't wait to watch them survive those classes, too. And to feel each other out and hang out with us a little, and fight over teaching parishes, and make it through finals week, and come back for more in the spring!

I'm pretty excited.

Train Song

Nick left.