Less than a month from Rome and...
One of these days I'm going to stop talking about myself all the time on here and get back to my real love of pondering all things Divine... but at the moment I guess you get to hear about the latest life news.
I've been pretty quiet online the last couple of weeks, but I've had good reason! Switching continents, finishing an undergraduate career, landing a Providential place to live, and seeking out gainful and self-sustaining employment tend to make life interesting to say the least.
However - I am very happy to report that the jet lag is gone, the credits are (slowly) transferring back over here to polish off my transcript, I'm quite happy for the moment in a wonderful apartment (that also happens to be at a parish - with a Blessed Sacrament chapel downstairs!), and, finally, I am thrilled to report that I have just returned from my second day on the job!
I began work on Monday as a Director of Faith Formation at a parish in the Twin Cities metro region. It is a position that I by no means expected to get, although it is one that was of great interest to me, as I have not had a lot of experience in youth ministry or RE teaching. However, as soon as I came into this parish it just felt like a good "fit" for me, and apparently they agreed! Thankfully, the parish is quite solid theologically, with a great staff, and a VERY active parishoner base (example: they have had Perpetual Adoration for over 10 years, and the parish is only about 700 families!). The kids and parents, I'm told, are a great group and have been getting great formation for years already. Additionally, I understand that there are a great many committed volunteers who are more than happy to work with me (the "newbie") to get settled and sorted out. All in all, very encouraging, and possibly the best place for a new Faith Formation Director to start!
Oh, and just to throw this out there - it so happens that in the area is another young DRE, a graduate of Franciscan U in Steubenville. She was at daily Mass at my new parish this morning and dropped a note at the office for me to call her. We met up for lunch and it was great to talk to her! Well, she was quite excited that there was another "peer" working in the area's parishes, and we spent a great deal of time going over the challenges and blessings that is the Catholic culture here in this corner of the metro. Already we were beginning to throw around some ideas for brainstorming between our two parishes and the surrounding community of parishes. She will be, God-willing, both a great new friend and also a support for me in this scary new world of Faith Formation and Youth Ministry responsibilities.
And that would be just the latest in an amazing series of Providential experiences that has convinced me, over and over again, that no matter how inadquete or excited I may feel at times, it is not really I who is choosing to do this, but God who has chosen me for it. I must simply keep praying and trusting that He who has begun this good work will bring it to fulfillment, in whatever way He so wills.
So far, the two big things on my plate are, firstly, to aid in bringing 23 of our youth to the Steubenville North conference THIS WEEKEND at the UST campus (yikes!), and then to work with the parish to come up with a new format for the K-8 faith formation, going from weekly "CCD" style to monthly Family Formation. Both promise to be exciting and also daunting, for very different reasons!
For this blog, then, I will continue to post to it, but things are going to be unsettled for a bit I'm afraid. But, I love to "FEED THE BLOG!" as they say. :) So stay tuned!