As with any schooling experience, my closest friends at the seminary are those who are in my class - who have been with me through orientation, Greek, and Systematic Theology since day one. And, since I'm on internship right now, that means my closest friends - my classmates - are also on internship. They're literally all over the world in places like Washington, Florida, the Republic of Georgia, Nebraska, rural Minnesota, and Kansas City. This makes having a social life difficult for all of us. I'm luckier than some, since I'm still living at the seminary and am able to be social with friends from other classes. At the same time, though, there's something to be said about being separated for twelve months from a group of people I've bonded with through most of my seminary journey. One of my closest friends from LSTC is many states away, and we try to keep in touch, mostly by texting one another or talking on the phone. His wife travels a lot for work, and so when she comes to Chicago, she stays with us. In fact, she's here now! Andrea and I always look forward to her visits because it gives us time to catch up with her and continue our close friendship throughout the year. We stay up late and talk about how the intership process is treating all of us - interns and spouses alike; we talk about how much fun we had our first two years at LSTC; and most of all we make plans for a spectacular senior year. Also, I stole her iPhone and Facetimed with her husband. That was a nice bonus.
It's amazing to stop and think about the friendships that arise out of this vocational quest that is seminary, and I am so glad to be blessed with fellow seminarians on the journey. Even during this year apart, the little contact we keep with one another is truly life-sustaining. My next goal is to figure out how to play board games via Skype. Once we get that going, the states between us all will be almost insignificant. Of course, Facetime and Skype can't compete with the anticipation of having my classmates return for our senior year. It's going to redefine the word, "epic."