Friday, May 30, 2008

Setting Our Hearts On Fire - One Day at a Time!

Thursday night was the last in this year's Living Ignatian speaker series. Living Ignatian was a way for us to develop a deeper understanding of some of St. Ignatius' Spiritual Exercises and how we can incorporate them into our regular lives. Throughout the year we had speakers on Sin, the Life of Christ, the Passion of Christ, and the Resurrection. Fr. Paul Coutinho challenged us to think outside our current beliefs and understandings of our personal faith and theology and determine what it really is God is calling us to do. According to St. Ignatius, we are being called to love. John and Megan Kennedy offered insight on how to "Live to Forgive" as we reconcile social sin with responsible citizenship and imitate the life and love of Christ through social awareness and action. John Neafsay encouraged us in Lent to Live as Disciples by reflecting on our personal vocation and how we can raise the level of consciousness about God's call in our own lives, especially as it relates to serving others. Fr. Michael Sparough, the Executive Director of Charis, challenged us to look at death and suffering as something to be embraced as it helps us grow closer to Christ by uniting us with his Passion and death. Last night, Lorraine Snyder wrapped things up with a conversation about Living the Resurrection, and setting our hearts on fire with the rebirth of Christ in our lives post-Easter.

Each of these talks explored a piece of Ignatian spirituality and how it can be brought into our lives. (More details about the Living Ignatian Series are available!) Young adults get weary of being preached at and talked down to, especially in matters of religious faith and spiritual development. It seems to me that incorporating these ideas into a discussion versus a lecture is the best way for us as young adults to really delve into some of the more difficult theological concepts while discovering for ourselves what they really mean in our lives. I have loved attending every Living Ignatian talk this year, and feel that each one has helped me add a new layer of awareness that I did not have before.

These are just my thoughts - perhaps someone else will have further information or insight!
-Briana C.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


Ta da! Welcome to Charis Ministries' first foray into the world of blogging. As we expand our programming, our staff, and our travels, we wanted to keep you posted on what we're up to.

Upcoming posts should include live updates from Lauren Gaffey while she's in Australia for World Youth Day, as well as Lauren Berke on the Service Trip in Pontotoc, Mississippi.

Check back soon!

- Lauren B