“Although we all speak many languages, we are here together tonight speaking only one language.”
— paraphrased from Elvera, a PAX exchange student from Kyrgyzstan
Thirteen languages were spoken tonight.
Each speaker came to the microphone not only to introduce themselves but to speak a little in their native language. From Filipino, German, Ukrainian, English, and Spanish to Kyrgyz, Basque, Azerbaijani, Russian, Korean, Thai, Italian, and Turkish.
Underneath a thin veneer of dinner with the students in the PAX exchange program, a program which brought Kate from Kazakhstan to our family, lay something much more profound. It was a frothing convergence of countries and languages, of recipes and ingredients, of traditions and ethnicities, of students and parents, of strangers and friends, of joy and appreciation, of many languages and of just one. A convergence of lesser differences that give rise to a similarity far greater.
Although there were many languages spoken tonight; although there are many languages spoken throughout the world, we really speak but one.
The language of humanity.
Today’s gift of time … Our family took our exchange daughter Kate’s dinner through the PAX program.