I remember my first day of college.  It was the community college just a town away, but I was terribly nervous as I awaited the instructor’s arrival.  When Jim Valovick walked in with his blue shirt and yellow tie,  he smiled at those of us who had arrived early and began unpacking his briefcase.

Kate, Josh and I had all signed up for a logic class together and we sat awaiting the first lecture.  Immediately Josh and Jim began their delicate relationship between the ex-priest instructor and the tall, slendor atheist I followed around like a puppy.  Josh would challenge some assumption made by Jim and Jim would smile slyly and say, “Take it on faith, Josh.”

It was always a kindly banter and in every subsequent class I took with Mr. Valocick, including two years of independent study in NT Greek and ethics classes, I found Jim was more than a teacher, he was also a friend and mentor.  He was a kind instructor who was passionate about his work and his students and when I saw him earlier this year; at a Bella Fleck concert late summer and this fall at Telford Farm, he always made it a point to say hello and to catch up on all that was happening in school.

So, tonight I have to take it on some kind of faith that all will be well for Jim and those who knew and loved him.  My heart goes out to Jim’s family, fellow instructors and students.

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