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Best of the Week 2019-2020: Holy Cross Values


EDSMEN SEND HEARTFELT LETTERS TO STAY CONNECTED WITH HOLY CROSS BROTHERS IN LOCKDOWN AT UNIVERSITY OF NOTRE DAME

With every visit to the University of Notre Dame, Edsmen always make the time to connect with and visit the Holy Cross Brothers who have retired to Notre Dame's campus, many of whom previously taught at St. Ed's during their careers. To maintain the safety and health of the community, the brothers have been quarantined in Columba Hall (photographed) on campus with limited options to communicate with others in the outside world. To stay connected with the brothers during lockdown, Edsmen have been participating in a new service project, mailing letters with messages of encouragement and support to lift the brothers' spirits.

"It goes to show how important our connection is with others, especially when we're being asked to stay distant from people," says Campus Minister Ms. Cari White. "It's been really touching to see our students take the time to make a connection with the brothers who they may never actually meet in person. Hospitality and community are such important pillars of St. Ed's and our students stretched this idea of community to include those from afar, especially these brothers who have helped shape and identify our community into what it is today."

"One of our Holy Cross's great charisms is hospitality. We often forget that you can be hospitable to those who are not visiting you in person. The idea of reaching out to others at a distance is welcoming to others," says Br. Dennis Bednarz, C.S.C. "I think writing a letter has become a lost art in this age of texts, email, and tweets, but the brothers have greatly expressed their gratitude for all the notes they've received from our Edsmen. We are all discovering the importance of personal correspondence during this time."

"It's important for our students to be reminded that there are many people out there who can't be with their families and are having to deal with even more restrictions because they are more vulnerable to the virus based on their age or health conditions," says Ms. White. "Helping our students see and connect with people in isolation is really important. It's also an opportunity for our students, who may be feeling lonely, to connect with someone else. It helps that, through our students' letters, the brothers can remember those roots they planted in Holy Cross schools all those years ago and still see the fruit of their work through our students' connection. I think this is a project we should continue, even after the pandemic."

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