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Words of love from South Dining Hall

| Tuesday, April 21, 2015

To all the incredible Notre Dame family and friends:

It is with humbled and ever so grateful hearts that John and I wish to tell all of you how very much we love you and treasure the time we have enjoyed with each one of you on a personal level.

There are no words available to truly convey how we thank God for you, each and every one. To the students, we pray you seek God’s face in all you do. He will never fail you, and no one on this earth will ever love you as He loves you. If you are graduating this May, our prayer is that you will seek His counsel with earnest and wait upon His will in your lives. Remember always, there is no such thing as failure, only lessons to be learned. Learn them well, and He will pick you up, brush you off and set you on the right path. A dear friend and her husband once told me about an incident that happened once while walking in the woods one day along with their dog, which was a bird dog. The dog spotted something on the path in a direction they were not going. They tried to get the dog’s attention to no avail. Her husband finally walked over to the dog, picked it up, which broke its attention on whatever it thought was so important, and set it down on the right path. We both laughed since sometimes that is just what God has to do with us, after all He is our Heavenly Father. As a parent, that is what one has to do from time to time, so that is what God will do to get us on the right path and/or to get our attention sometimes.

One last thing I recently was led to believe in happened at the beginning of this “path” that we were walking. Out of the blue, a very drastic change was required, one we would love to have avoided. It was a lesson for me in particular, as I am a person who does not enjoy someone taking my “comfort blanket” away from me.

I have always liked (as most people do) things that are comfortable for me, dishes in the dishwasher in a certain pattern, etc. I was listening to a radio program on the way home, and a very intriguing statement was made, and I could not get it out of my mind. I had been wrestling with taking a break from SDH and reluctance to do so this close to the end of school term and missing the last few weeks. The program was a pastor speaking who had attended a high school graduation ceremony of a youth who was giving the valedictorian speech. They said, and I quote: “When your memories exceed your dreams, life begins to end.” That stayed with me all night long. At 3 a.m., I could not sleep due to that phrase going over and over in my mind. I finally got up and while sitting in the dark, it dawned on me that that statement was the answer I needed to make the decision to step away.

My priority is my John. I was not going to let this disease be my memory, but I needed to dream about a new way of life if that was what I was called to do. John and I both are very comfortable with the expected outcome of this time in our life, but while accepting the worst, we are expecting the best. God holds us in the shelter of His wings, His hand is over us leading us from glory to glory, so may His will be done, in all things.

May God bless you in a mighty way, expanding your territory, walking with you hand in hand through the rough times, sad times, grief and pain, for I know He will be with you through all the wondrous moments in your lives, the great adventures He will lead you on and the prosperity he plans for you, all for your good.

You have been and will continue to be our great joy and blessing no matter where you may roam. Nothing would make us happier than for anyone who would like to keep in touch from time to time as time permits you to do so. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all the prayers from God’s saints and prayer warriors. We hope to see you in the fall or when you return to ND for candlelight dinners after the game.

For those of you who wish to contact us, here is our email address: ritschard@reagan.com. Please do drop a line from time to time and let us know what is happening in your lives. We will rejoice with you in all things.

In His service,

John and Lila Ritschard

SDH monitors

April 19

The views expressed in this Letter to the Editor are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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