Regulus Address // Issue 1 // May 2020
In recent times, we have together encountered natural disasters and a terror attack. Now we face perhaps our biggest challenge of all, the invisible enemy that is the COVID-19 pandemic.
There can be no denying the gravity of the situation. The response from the government is testament to this and the priority placed on public health and well-being is immensely comforting.
As always, College decision making and planning is centred around the health, safety and well-being of students and staff and, in the case of COVID-19, is guided exclusively by government and the Ministry of Health as the single source of truth.
While the scars of past adversity are still raw, they are immensely valuable in supporting us to step up to and deal with this latest challenge. We know how to come together as a community to get through tough times. We know how to adapt and make the best of things. We know that much good will come from it, and we know we will get through it together.
We know because we have done it before, we have all that growth and learning to draw upon to do it again.
In saying that, we will all be challenged at times by the enormity and uncertainty of it all, the economic and social consequences, the disruption to livelihoods and our way of life. This is where more than anything we must rely upon one another for support.
Earlier this year, Rev. Paul Morrow mentioned that he and a group of friends hiked up Mt Vernon every Sunday at 7.00am and perhaps I would like to join them. I went with them several times.
In late March, having spent the previous week immersed in COVID-19 deliberations in the various aspects of my professional and personal life, I was starting to feel overwhelmed and anxious. The walk up Mt Vernon with not three, but four, wise men to talk, to share and to contemplate with, was a wonderfully uplifting antidote to my malaise. And when we sat together in the early morning sun at the summit and reflected on our good fortune living here in the South Island of New Zealand, it put things into perspective. It was a reminder of the power of connection, comradery and nature. Simple things that cost nothing but time. We will all need more of this over the coming months as we navigate these uncharted waters together.
Physical distancing must not become a barrier to connection, kindness, care, and compassion. And let us have faith that we will prevail in what is looking like the defining global event of our lives.
Kia mau ki te tūmanako,
Te whakapono me te aroha
Hold fast to hope, faith and love.
On behalf of the Board of Governors