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Saying Grace and Giving Thanks

At USW we have a lot for which to be thankful. Enrollment is at an all-time high, but more than that, it is the students we are enrolling and the faculty who are on hand to teach them who are among the many blessings we might count. And let’s not forget our incredible coaches, staff, trustees, foundation members, donors, and friends. Truly our cup runneth over!

Next week we will be breaking for Thanksgiving. But before we do, this week the USW campus will host the annual Lea County Prayer Breakfast in the Jack and Mabel Maddox Student Life Center on Thursday at 6 AM. Residents of Lea County are all invited to break bread together, eat breakfast, and hear an uplifting message delivered this year by Mike Stone. All who attend will surely witness at least one minor miracle when they receive the Benediction from my wife, not well known for early rising, and hence somewhat of a miracle in and of itself! 

Campus will close at the end of this week for the Thanksgiving break and the mass exodus will begin about then if not a bit sooner. But before we break I would like to ask for prayers for our students, faculty and staff who will be traveling to spend time with families and friends. I would also like to recognize a few accomplishments as we near the end of the term.

 2016 11-15 thanksgiving

Last week Caryn and I were privileged to attend our first postseason Red River Athletic Conference championship tournament as Priscilla Morgan’s volleyball team travelled to San Antonio to close out the season. Although we played hard and looked to me like the better team, we finished the season as the conference runner-up. Nevertheless, I was proud of our young women and the way that they competed and exuded high character at all times. I also was very impressed with our fan base who came out in support of the team in great numbers and I will always remember one proud aunt thanking me for all USW had done for her niece to help her become the wonderful young woman that she had grown into over four years in college. High praise indeed! 

Various USW volleyball team members were recognized for individual accomplishments this past week. A freshman, Brenda Pargas was acknowledged as the RRAC’s Setter of the Year and Kristin Silva repeated as 1st Team All-Conference, where she was joined by Brenda and also Shelby Bartley. Hannah Massey and Ashley Preuss achieved 2nd Team All-Conference recognition, Corina Madrid and Lee Ann Ocasio received Honorable Mention, and Corina also was named to the Champions of Character Team. 

Cross country and soccer also produced several individual honors. Gabby Arsiaga finished second in the All-Conference Cross Country Meet and Alexandria Adams placed fourth, helping the USW Women’s team finish the year in third place. Men’s Cross Country was led once again by Gilbert Ramirez who helped his team to a third place finish. Kirsten Damanti was added to the Conference Champions of Character Team in Women’s Soccer and Michael Boone made the Conference Champions of Character Team on the Men’s side. Both Jimmy Lara and Jack Laurie made 2nd Team All-Conference in Men’s Soccer. 

November seems to be the month that we celebrate our blessings and pause to give thanks to God. But every day is a gift from God, and as the doxology reminds us, from Him all blessings flow!