Dear Newman Community,
Hello from Chicago! This week Fr. Ray and I are with a group of five students at St. Xavier University in Chicago for Campus Ministry Leadership Institute (CMLI). This five-day training and working institute gathers student leaders and campus ministers from across the country as campus teams. Grounded in the U.S. Bishops' Pastoral Letter, Empowered by the Spirit, the Institute is designed to produce effective leaders who work collaboratively to develop and implement successful Catholic Campus Ministry programs on college campuses, both private and public.
A large portion of our time (over 10 hours!) at the Institute is dedicated to working in our campus team on a project to bring back to NMSU in the fall. We are so fortunate, the students on our campus team all came up with innovative project ideas aimed at growing faith and community at Newman. After careful discernment, the project we decided to work on is developing a new Prayer & Fellowship Team.
Please pray for our campus team as well as the campus teams from other universities across the nation participating in CMLI this week. Please also pray for Sal and the students and campus ministers working hard to put on the Institute.
Our CMLI Project
The project we will be working on is developing a new prayer/discipleship/fellowship team. This team will act to deepen already existing friendships and try to help new students feel welcome. The team will work on improving communication with students around (before, during, after) events, ie. send students personal reminders of when Newman events are coming up. The prayer team will also check in with people during the week, schedule coffee, lunch and dinner “dates” and ultimately develop deeper relationships with students involved in campus ministry. Through this increased one-on-one interaction, students will grow in faith as they attend and reflect on all the different activities within the context of a closer community.
Greetings Newman folks!
It was good to be a part of the Parish Ministry fair last week! There was such positive energy and interest from so many to engage in the various Newman ministries. Thanks go out to all who were involved in putting the ministry fair together.
I would like to extend the invitation to anyone who wasn’t able to stop by the Campus Ministry table last weekend to partner up with us in providing both literal and figurative ‘nourishment’ to the student parishioners. On the literal side, anyone who possess the talent of baking and cooking is welcome to share the fruits of their labors in our various hospitality events, such as Midweek Mass and Dinner and After Mass socials. On the spiritual side, we would like to meet with resident parishioners interested in witnessing their faith or sharing their professional expertise by giving a talk; mentoring a student; or helping to organize and facilitate outdoor activities. If you are interested, contact us via email, email@example.com or call us in the office.
Easter Greetings to all!
Our Lenten journey reached its conclusion with our beautiful Holy Week celebrations. I still vividly remember the first time I participated in all the Holy Week services at Newman as a young college student (with a full head of hair!). I was so moved by the Holy Thursday call to service in the communities participation in the washing of the feet, the solemn, prayerful veneration of the Cross on Good Friday, and the movement from darkness to light at the Easter Vigil as we were beckoned to come to the water, singing Alleluia. Our Lord’s passion, death and Resurrection took on a whole new meaning back then, and I continue to be nourished by our community’s prayerful celebrations of His saving actions.
It is this Pascal Mystery – His living, dying and rising that nourishes me as I serve as a campus minister. And it is this graced power that animates the many students that are busy preparing for next weekend’s Aggie Awakening 8. It is quite fitting that this semester’s retreat will happen during the Easter Season. At the very heart of the retreat experience is the hope, and thus the focus of all the staff’s efforts, that retreatants may recognize a deeper desire for relationship with Christ, be drawn into an experience of Christ and be awakened to a new way of life, following and loving Christ more deeply.
As you bask in the glory of the Resurrection, please keep staff and retreatants for Aggie Awakening 8 in your prayers. If you are, or know of any student who is interested in the retreat, there are still a few spots available, shoot us an email to get more info, or to sign up: firstname.lastname@example.org.
It has been such a busy few weeks for our Parish community and Campus Ministry. Beginning with Ash Wednesday a few weeks ago and running through the Parish Mission last week, oh and throw in the buzz of the Papal visit to the borderland…well, the energy and activity seems to be running on hyper speed. The Spirit is a movin’! That movement of the Spirit was evident this past weekend. A group of 20 retreatants made the trek up the mountain for a one day retreat just outside Ruidoso. We spent time rockwall climbing, ziplining, completing a team building challenge course, praying and reflecting. It was a great opportunity to get away from the stress, build community and reflect on the presence and movement of the Spirit in our daily living. One of our reflection activities was to look back on instances when God’s presence was felt/experienced/ known through our five senses. The individual responses and group discussion were rich and profound. Retreatants shared joyful sounds such as ‘a baby’s first cry’, ‘laughter’, and ‘cello/classical music’ that called their attention to God’s presence. They recognized God’s presence in the taste of ‘the Eucharist, the Body and Blood of Christ, and a simple meal lovingly made and shared’. The sobering sight of a homeless man, and the heart wrenching memory of a hug shared with a childhood friend who recently passed away were also graced moments. We all came down the mountain, renewed in our belief that while life may be full of ups and downs, God’s abiding presence accompanies us all on our journey.
Sharing the 'Good News' of Campus Ministry!