A graduate of Bhaktivedanta College, (Radhadesh, Belgium) looks back fondly on her time in the ministerial program.
Skimming through a photo album of my ten months at Bhaktivedanta College (2002–2003), I slowed down near the end and remembered my mixed feelings on June 28, our graduation day, as we walked through a forest at Radhadesh, Belgium. We were the first graduating class. We played drums and karatalas and sang Krishna’s names as we walked toward a green field where we would hold our last meeting.
Our months together were the best time of my life. I felt happy, inspired, and enlightened by the experience, but I was sad it was all ending. And I had to abruptly leave my classmates the next day to visit my family and the devotees in Israel. While sitting together, sharing thoughts, exchanging concluding words, and looking into the future, we reflected on various experiences throughout the year. Those ten months were like a long hallway, and the various courses like so many open doors on both sides.
According to our inclinations, we eventually chose different paths to pursue. Bram received initiation (as Vasudeva Dasa), returned home to Holland, and became the new president of the Amsterdam temple for one year. Krishna Candra, our youngest classmate (her parents are disciples of Srila Prabhupada), went to a university in Canada, where she is from. Rabin, of Indian descent and from Holland, had inspired us with his meditations on Lord Caitanya. He has now dedicated two years to serving on the College staff. After visiting Israel, I accepted an earlier invitation to join the staff of the Vaishnava Academy for Girls in Alachua, Florida. In my service here I use the knowledge, skills, and values I acquired during my studies. I often take guidance from the teacher train maintained, and the project is constantly developing. Couples are raising families, and the visitors program brings in thousands of people. Since I love studying, I was attracted to staying there to study.
by Nrtya Kisori Devi Dasi
From Back to Godhead magazine, March/April 2005.