From the Head of School

The Magnolias are Blooming...

  • Letters from the Head of School
Alfred F. Dugan III

Happy Easter, Princeton Academy Community - 

In this season of resurrection, new life and new energy ignite a spirit of renewal. Buds are forming on trees that appeared dormant days ago. Earth that was just recently covered with snow is now verdant, bursting green and popping with daffodils. Birds that gave space for winter stillness have returned with their beautiful songs. The sun stays with us longer in the day providing us with evening light. People are emerging to spend time outside, their steps lively with a bit more joy. Nature is alive, hope is on the horizon and the signs of spring provide us with new beginnings. In all of this, we witness the promise that we see in our children each and every day; we see the Holy Spirit.

And, oh yes, the Magnolia Trees are blooming...

Of all the natural phenomena that occur on our beautiful campus throughout the year, one of my favorites is the blooming of the Magnolia trees. Coinciding with the Easter holiday, the spectacle of this floral awakening reminds us of resurrection and of everlasting life.

The bloom is ephemeral, but the life cycle is perennial. The magnificence of the flowers lasts only for a while, but the vitality of the tree’s life remains rooted and strong. The tree itself endures, living through the change of seasons, carrying with it the stories of time long past and expressing itself with colorful majesty every spring. In the Magnolia tree, we see the mystery of life metaphorically displayed. 

This year, it seems that the Magnolia buds have held onto the moment just a bit longer, pregnant with promise, signaling to us as humans aspiring to live in harmony with creation as if to say see us… Appreciate us… Learn from us - the seasons will change; time moves fast; and in your hurry for tomorrow to come, remember to savor this hour.

On this Easter weekend, I encourage you to read An Easter Reflection by Suzanne Cooke, RSCJ, in which she evokes the wisdom of Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat who “reminds us to be attentive to the Spirit dwelling deep within our very core” and that “sensitivity to the Spirit enables us to see our common humanity and our profound connection with all of Creation.” As always, revealing the love of God in our world is at the heart of it all.

Please come to campus whenever you can to marvel at the blooming of the Magnolia trees, to interpret this moment with your heart and to find your own meaning in the magic of the Magnolias. 

I wish you and your loved ones a peaceful, healthy and blessed Easter. 

With love and prayers,

  • Easter
  • nature
  • renewal
  • spring

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