Wednesday, February 29, 2012

National Ritual Celebration Week 2012: All Day Everyday, Let Ritual Be There

Happy National Ritual Celebration Week!

Ritual is a part of every fraternity man or sorority woman's experience. While this may be true, the extent to which it is differs greatly. Some collegiate members see their Ritual on a regular basis, some talk about it, some learn it, some lead their chapter in Ritual study or practice. To others, Ritual happens once a semester or once a year - it's a book, or a phrase. It may have been edited down to be a short as possible, or pages and dialog have been lost or forgotten.

While Ritual should be a part of our lives daily, this week is a time to draw special attention to it. What does Ritual mean to you? How is it a part of your life?

I think one of the biggest problems we have as collegians is really understanding what it means to "live your Ritual." "Live your Ritual" is a phrase that's becoming more and more popular - I use it all the time... #LTR for short - but can we really live the promise and practice of our Rituals if we do not understand what they mean?

As members of our organizations we make many promises - we promise to go to meetings, be on committees, go to events, raise money.... the list goes on and on. But, the most important promise we make is that of our Ritual. No matter our organization, when we go through our initiation rite we are given an expectation - one set forth by our founders - and challenged to live our lives in the path they've laid out.

No. Living our Rituals is not always easy, and no, it is not always simple. But, YES it can be done. It can be done today, and tomorrow, it can be done at chapter meetings and philanthropy events, it can be done in our classes and yes, we can even live our Ritual when we're out at a bar or surrounded by friends.

When we take the time to learn about our Ritual we learn the lessons of excellence - brotherhood and sisterhood, academic achievement, the pursuit of a higher purpose.... those things don't have to live within the confines of Sunday chapter meetings - they can be there all the time....Saturday nights included!

Take the challenge with me this week to carry your Ritual with you everywhere you go. Live your Ritual by learning a little more about it. Live your Ritual by showing compassion and sincerity. Live your Ritual by reaching out to others and sharing your experiences. Live your Ritual by going the extra mile, or showing the extra effort.

While this week might be National Ritual Celebration Week - let's celebrate the gift of our Ritual everyday, starting today - GO!

<3 Love and Loyally

Monday, February 27, 2012

I Love the Pin...

The song says "Diamonds are a girls best friend..." to sisters of Alpha Delta Pi, the diamond is more than a piece of jewelry, it's a symbol of our commitment to our sisters throughout time and space.

While the first Adelpheans wore blue ribands scripted with "We Live for Each Other" today's Alpha Delts wear the black diamond pin. Some pins are studded with pearls, diamonds, or other precious stones, and some are plain and simple - no matter the additions, they are carry the same value. Two stars and hands clasped in the Adelphean bonds of friendship guard our Greek letters, Alpha Delta Pi.

This is my badge. Between the pin and our chapter guard are dangles - like an ADPi charm bracelet, these dangles remind us of our experiences, our achievements, and our hard work. During my opportunities to travel to international meetings of Alpha Delta Pi I've loved talking with Pi sisters about their badges and their dangles - what their experience with our sisterhood has been, and what are the memories recorded by the dangles on their badges.

As sisters of Alpha Delta Pi we wear our diamond-shaped badge as a symbol and reminder of our values. The diamond has four points and so too, we as sisters have four areas to which we commit our lives to.

The Creed of Alpha Delta Pi gives purpose to each point on our badge:
"I believe that I must strive to become a well-balanced person by following the dictates of the four points symbolized by our diamond-shaped badge: first, strengthening my own character and personality; second, watching my attitudes toward my fellow-beings; third, recognizing the value of high educational standards; and fourth, developing faith and loyalty." From these words we are given the four points: Self, Sisterhood, Scholarship, and Sorority.

When we wear our pin we give call to these promises and commitments for others to see. Our badge has been worn by women across the country who share the values of our 161 year old sisterhood. When we wear our pins we carry all of this with us - all of the history, all of the sisterhood, and all of our promises. When we wear our badge we re-commit ourselves to our sisters and the tie that binds us all together becomes a little bit stronger.

As Caralee Strock Standard concluded in our creed - "I BELIEVE that these four guide-posts, guarded by the stars and friendly hands clasped in the Adelphean bonds of fellowship, will lead me to achieve a rich and useful life."

<3 Love and Loyally