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“My faith gives me the feeling that everything is going to work out”

“My faith gives me the feeling that everything is going to work out”

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Archive Leonie Frissen

Law student Leonie Frissen is one of the students who live in the building used by Lux ad Mosam, the Christian student association in Maastricht. Although many students have left the city, Frissen’s student house is still quite full. “Eleven people usually live here. There are eight of us here now.”

Eight people sheltering in place under one roof – what’s that like? Frissen laughs. “Sometimes it takes a little more effort not to get annoyed, but we’re doing well. We live in a large house with a nice roof terrace. We’ve settled into a routine. We have breakfast together between eight and eight thirty, and then we all either hit the books or hang out and relax. We have a tea break at ten thirty, lunch at one o’clock, a coffee break at four and dinner together in the evenings.” If they want to be alone, they go to their own rooms.

They don’t adhere to any strict social distancing rules within the house, says Frissen. “But we do keep 1.5 metres away from other people when we go outside or if we have a visitor at the house, which rarely happens now.” She and her housemates also have an unspoken agreement “not to go outside with more than two people at the same time.”

Frissen took a take-home exam last Monday. It was “not much different from usual, actually. You get a Word document with questions, you type in your answers and send it back.” Something that will be very different next period is moot court, which will have to be held online. “It’s too bad – I’ll miss the feeling of being in court. But it is what it is.”

What role does her faith play in times like these? “It offers a sense of security and the belief that everything will work out and we’ll get through this together. My faith encourages me to pay more attention to the people around me. For example, my sister and I have agreed to call our grandma or send her a card every week.” Frissen’s student association is closely involved with the Dutch Salvation Army. “We’re not currently doing volunteer work on location, but starting this Friday the Salvation Army will pass on requests for help to us if they can’t help those people themselves. It’s about things like getting groceries for older people.”

What are these corona-days like for students? How does it affect their studies and other parts of their life? Observant speaks to one of them every day to give an idea about the virus' impact.

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