“What’s your sign?”
No, I am not using that old pick-up line. I am actually thinking about my zodiac sign which is Cancer (July birthday). Any description of the type of person a Cancer is always includes something about the home such as this statement from this website: “They are very emotional and sensitive, and care deeply about matters of the family and their home.”
For me, I have to say that the description fits. I have a small home that I just love! During the autumn and early winter, I am always happy to be inside with all the lights on, maybe a fire in the fireplace, and something baking in the kitchen (ideally by someone else! Hint, hint to my husband!).
Whether in my current house or in apartments I have lived in before, I have always felt that sense of happily snuggling in surrounded by what and whom I love.
As a matter of fact, I have also snuggled into my home away from home here at Maria College for going on thirty years now, and the College has always cared that students, faculty, and staff feel welcome and comfortable on campus.
For those who find themselves without any type home due to unfortunate financial circumstances or natural disasters such as Hurricanes Harvey and Irma just recently, my heart aches since I so treasure the idea of home. There is always hope, however, as people rebuild their lives and enter new homes of various sorts. So many good people also open their homes to those in need offering welcome and hospitality, giving validity to the old phrase: “Home is where the heart is.”
As a matter of fact, the founders of Maria College, the Sisters of Mercy, hold dear the spiritual value of hospitality: “Hospitality is a cornerstone of Mercy. Without warm, welcoming, and hospitable hearts we are simply unable to be the instruments of God’s capacious generosity to all of creation. As God is merciful and hospitable to us, so we are merciful and hospitable to all whom we encounter. In Mercy, we create spaces of peace and welcome in which persons may grow into their full potential as human beings cherished by God.” (Reference)
NOTE TO STUDENTS STUDYING FOR JOBS IN HEALTH CARE: Did you know that the word “hospitality” comes from the same Latin word as “hospital” meaning “friendliness to guests”? (Reference)
My thoughts about home were also recently sparked as I came to think about the United States as home to so many diverse people which is one of the greatest, most unique, and most powerful aspects of this nation founded on the idea of hospitality as symbolized by the Statue of Liberty.
Former President Barack Obama was recently moved to write about the United States as our “homeland”: “What makes us American is not a question of what we look like, or where our names come from, or the way we pray. What makes us American is our fidelity to a set of ideals—that all of us are created equal; that all of us deserve the chance to make of our lives what we will; that all of us share an obligation to stand up, speak out, and secure our most cherished values for the next generation. That’s how America has traveled this far. That’s how, if we keep at it, we will ultimately reach that more perfect union.” (Reference)
As the days grow shorter and the air a bit cooler, I wish everyone the opportunity to snuggle into whatever place is home to you!
Until next time . . .