Most if not all of us remember May as the month of exams and exam preparations for what was in my day the Inter and Leaving Cert. I remember the long days filled with sunshine as you were ‘stuck inside’ swatting or cramming it all in. I quickly discovered that cramming bore no fruit but a balanced approach to study, especially in these final days. A balanced approach encapsulates the human and the spiritual. On a human level proper sleep, proper food, proper exercise, and proper study time, while on a spiritual level a little bit of prayer, attending Mass, lighting a candle and asking God’s spirit to guide those undergoing exams. It’s true that exams do not and should never define us, but exams do help us grow and in many ways give us the skills for the next phase in life – whether it’s going to 3rd level, or taking a year off, or entering the workplace. Exams teach us not to know things and give it back, but to express our knowledge of a subject in a positive way. Exams will come and go, but the sense of who I am as a person continues to grow. People won’t ask you what grades or degrees you have, but by the sense of the common good and living with compassion and care, will others see the kind of person you are. So the very best of luck to everyone sitting exams. Do take time out to ask God’s help through the Spirit of Wisdom and Courage.