Wow. YAV orientation at Stony Point, New York went by fast. It has been a week of gaining knowledge and socializing but also a time of many emotions. Not a shocker when you put 60 people in a room and they won’t see their families for a year. We have covered many topics such as Critical Cultural Competency, relationships, safety, gender issues, communication and conflict, self-care, and culture shock.
The best thing that I have learned this week is about my new community. During a time of emotional struggle during a presentation, my Belfast Community was right there with open arms to comfort me. I have never felt so welcomed and I’ve only known these people for 2 weeks! God has put this community together to help us have fun and get through the tough times this year.
I would like to end with a prayer that I received from one of the members at First Presbyterian Church of Philipstown, New York where other YAV’s and I told our stories during the church service:
Prayer of Protection
The light of God surrounds me,
The love of God enfolds me,
The power of God protects me,
The presence of God watches me,
Wherever I am