When I’m asked about my current faith life, I do a little cringe. I feel some shame and some (good ol’ Catholic) guilt. I haven’t been to church in a while. Not even virtually. Have I prayed in a while? Not explicitly. Should I be saying these things in a reflection about faith after college? Should I even be saying them at all…?
But when I slow down and think about faith… and life…
What I know is that I try to live my life as a person guided by the teachings of Christ. I am guided by my time at DePaul and I work to incorporate the Vincentian virtues and charism into my life. I actively spend time reflecting on my life, my actions, who I am, who I want to be. I ask myself if I am living the life Christ calls me to. And I think these are things that indicate a life of faith.
We seek, we try our best, we ask for guidance, we try again tomorrow. It is not easy. It will never be perfect. There are many ways to do this. And through it all, though it’s challenging right now, the most important aspect of faith is community.
St. Vincent de Paul, St. Louise de Marillac, all our Vincentian examples, constantly remind us that we cannot do this work alone. The work of Christ, nor the work of living. And it is in the moments when I serve others, when I stop worrying just about myself and reach out to someone else, when I connect with friends after a long while, or even just a few days – it is in these moments when I feel God most at work in my life.
After college, I spent a year volunteering and living in an intentional community (Vincentian Volunteers of Cincinnati), and I learned this in the most tangible way. Community is hard. It is work. And it is essential to our growth as Christians, as humans. As we build community, we build the Kingdom of God. And after you leave such a beautiful, sustained community like the one found at CCM, it can be challenging to find. But we keep going, we keep reaching out to others and reaching out to our friends and reaching out to God in faith that God guides our steps and wants what’s best for us. God wants us to connect and to help each other be our best, our most holy selves. My prayer for you is that you never stop searching, never stop seeking the Kingdom of Heaven, and though your efforts may not be perfect, know that it is in the seeking that our faith lies.
DPU ‘17 – BA English
Currently: I work as a Library Assistant in my hometown (Chelsea, MI)