""

Define Your Path

Leadership: The Gift of Love

Thinking of February! And how it is the shortest month of the year, and yet is one of the richest I think! It is the month of love with all its definitions and circumscriptions: as in caring, being selfless, and giving… It is also Black History month…But it is only fitting that February should also embrace the history of humankind in general. Those are things that last a lifetime…

For love knows no season. Anytime one can express their love, show it in a special fashion, or even hopes it comes their way. It is February and soon upon us is Valentine Day. Roses and chocolate abound…Kisses and wishes dance around…Hopes and dreams are not far behind…Let us celebrate year around, and never stop showing kindness and graciousness in ways that are tangible, lasting, and simply abiding…Love is selfless…

I just came across a book titled: The Twelve Gifts of Birth by Charlene Constanzo, a children book that should be read by all ages. Ms. Constanzo believes that we are born with marvelous gifts. I agree with her. The trick is to realize, cherish, and hold dearly unto the following precious bestowal of aptitudes, abilities, and faculties we are endowed with at birth.

The twelve gifts of birth, according to the author, are: 1. Strength; 2. Beauty; 3. Courage; 4. Compassion; 5. Hope; 6. Joy; 7. Talent; 8. Imagination; 9. Reverence; 10. Wisdom; 11. Love; and 12. Faith. These should be hallowed always throughout ones’ life. We need to remind each other about our bounty, so we can personally enhance our unique individuality! One way to enrich the gift is through a “validated education.” Since Psalms 110: 3 cites: “Royal dignity was yours the day you were born.”

Speaking about those special granted gifts, the MSL program for women in leadership at Benedictine University embraces all gender and all races and thrives on helping, caring, and celebrating all students with the special mission of lifting them up while assisting in reaching their goals and beyond through a comprehensive prospectus … The program focuses on each individual’s strength and abilities and offers support and encouragement for the sake of advancement and achievement for all involved, according to each one’s specific needs.

The MSL syllabus maintains the above-mentioned gifts in its design. Since it caters to the individual’s requirements, the program directs, and ascertains each student on the right path… This is a gift of love: the true “validated education.”

About the Author

Ms. Olfat El-Mallakh teaches World Religions at College of DuPage, and “The Endowment of Religions for Female Leadership”, she designed the course and wrote the manuscript for the textbook; at Benedictine University, USA. She is a Coptic Orthodox Christian, originally from Egypt, she began publishing poetry and short stories at age 15. For eight years she produced an educational television show for NCTV, aimed for children and their parents, called ‘Training Your Parents.” She was the poet in residence for “Midday with Sondra Gaer,” on public radio. She has degrees in French Literature, Art History, and Theology and Church History. She is interested in people and their art and culture. She is on the Women Advisory Council, “Women Institute for Global Leadership, Benedictine University, Naperville, IL 2008 to present. She is on the Advisory Council of EAD Egyptians Abroad for Development, Chicago, IL 2012 to present. A Fellow at the Newberry Library 2012; edited a book: Introduction to Islam, in 1989. Olfat is an avid reader and a world traveler.