It has been a busy summer in its own way for campus ministry. As I look back at the activity since the end of the Spring semester, the undercurrent that flows through my prayerful reflections is that of community. As I mentioned here a few weeks ago, I have had the opportunity to engage in the community of the universal church through my directorship of the Campus Ministry Leadership Institute, in continuing my graduate studies at Creighton, and in prayerful silence and reflection on an 8 day retreat. In all these experiences, I recognize that I bring along a strong sense of our faith community at Newman. I have been shaped and formed by this community in so many ways, and with a humble heart, I trust that our efforts in campus ministry provide a space for students to both offer their gifts for the common good of our faith community and to be shaped and formed by our community.
The blessing of community was on full display just this past week. One of our student members has made the tough decision to leave NMSU and head back East to be closer to family. While folks are sad to see her go, they also have a clear desire to celebrate her time here and the faithful bonds that have developed and strengthened over the past couple of years. As the campus ministry community gathered last week to pray, share a meal, and enjoy each others company, it was easy to recognize the presence of the Holy Spirit!
Community has always been essential to faith.
In the Hebrew Scriptures,
God formed a people.
In the Gospels, Jesus gathered a community of followers.
the Christian community was marked by a great diversity in language, class,
religious, background, etc.
The very concept of the
—three persons in one God—implies that the
God we worship is actually
a community of persons.
And the Church itself
is known as the Body of Christ.
(Empowered By The Spirit #36)
Our U.S. Bishops highlight that it is very important for us to ask and explore this very question. They offer a resource for how to do this called, Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship: A Call to Political Responsibility. In the coming months our parish will use Faithful Citizenship as a framework to reflect on our rights and duties in our democracy. Look for more info on how you can get involved in the bulletin and pulpit announcements at the end of Mass.
If you'd like to help plan learning and prayer opportunities related to Faithful Citizenship, email me at monastalbertnewmancenter.org.
Sharing the 'Good News' of Campus Ministry!