COVID-19 Community Update – March 23, 2020
Dear Northwest University community member,
Psalm 90 offers wonderful perspective on this moment in our history. "Lord, through all generations you have been our home! Before the mountains were born, before you gave birth to the earth and the world, from beginning to end, you are God." The Psalm goes on to reflect on the brevity of life—"Our days may come to seventy years, or eighty if our strength endures." Our time on earth is not eternal, but God is our home, and he is eternal. In response to the stock market losses of the past month, one pastor on Facebook said this weekend, "If God is your everything, you still have everything!" Similarly, I was watching a Seinfeld episode, and when asked how he was doing, Jerry responded, "I've got my health!" He was humorously referring back to a famous Geritol commercial from the 1970s (I still chuckle when I think of Geritol.) The commercial said, "When you've got your health, you've got just about everything." I resolved to respond to every inquiry about how I was doing with "I've got God and my health. What more could I ask for."
Since we have everything we really need, here are some Northwest University updates:
- The University mailroom remains open, Monday through Friday, 9:00–11:00 AM and 1:30–4:00 PM. You may enter the Barton building through the lower level southwest entry door with your card key.
- All other physical office spaces on campus are closed as of 5:00 PM today. Nevertheless, all university employees are working regular hours from home. If you do not know a particular office number, you can get to any employee through the university switchboard at (425) 822-8266, leaving a voicemail that will be routed to the appropriate office. You may also leave an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Employees are getting paid to work, and they will be happy to assist you in a timely manner. Employees with keys may use them to access their offices if needed. Essential services like custodial, food service, maintenance and security will continue to function during this time.
- Students have largely moved out of the residence halls. We expect that about 40 of them will remain for the rest of the semester and possibly through the summer. We will be moving everyone into two residence halls and each person will have an individual room. We will then close all other dormitories and intensify cleaning/disinfecting efforts in the open building while beginning deep cleaning of the others.
- You can tune in for regular inspiration through our Online Chapel services, now scheduled on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 10:00 AM on our Instagram site @NUCampusMin and on the NU Devo App.
I once quipped at a Nursing pinning ceremony the Northwest University motto in Latin, vocationem dei gerite, means "take Geritol daily." It doesn't. It means "Carry the Call." During this time of sheltering at home, make sure you depend on a daily dose of God's call rather than the highly alcohol-laden Geritol or any other palliative substance (unless prescribed by your doctor!). Listen to God's call, and be sure to make a lot of calls on your own. Stay in close touch with the people God lays on your heart. Walk in tough sensitivity. "Rejoice evermore, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus."
Joseph Castleberry, Ed.D.
President, Northwest University