Spiritual Direction

This past week, we had a guest Rev. Canon Jeanne Pearson talk to us about spiritual direction—what it is, what it could look like, and why someone might decide to seek out a spiritual director. One of the core beliefs of spiritual direction is that God is personal. Believing that God is personal is to believe that God truly knows you and has a plan for you.

For me, this belief incorporates spending more time “Turning” which is one of the 7 Pillars of the Way of Love. This pillar is described by “Pause, listen, and choose to follow Jesus”. During the Young Adult Reflection Day, for the pillar of Turn, we reflected on the following questions:

  • What practices help you turn again and again to Jesus Christ and the Way of Love?

  • How will (or do) you incorporate these practices into your rhythm of life?

  • Who will be your companion as you turn towards Jesus Christ?

While I do have some practices that grow my belief that God is personal and turn towards Jesus, like writing down what I’m thankful for each night, I’m still trying to figure out ways to better incorporate these practices into my rhythm of life! But even something as simple as writing these things down helps me see the ways that God is working for me and through me!

-Maria NYU'20

Earth Day

Happy Easter and Happy (Belated) Earth Day! This past weekend, I had the opportunity to travel home to celebrate with my family and while I was home I tried to spend as much time as possible outside. New York City is great, but nothing can beat the smell of flowers or of grass outside after it’s just rained—so how fitting that yesterday was Earth Day! With all that’s in the news about climate change and the need to act fast, it can be overwhelming to think about just how much work needs to be done to make serious change. However, there are things that we can do as students to help play a part in this global cleanup! Living in a dorm, we pay the same rates regardless of how much energy we use—but that doesn’t mean we should leave the lights on all the time! On easy thing to do is to turn your lights off when you’re not using them and unplug electronics or power strips when they’re not in use! When doing laundry, you can wait until you have a full load to wash your clothes, or even combining loads with a roommate! You can also volunteer for the non-profit organization, Rescuing Leftover Cuisine! Volunteers sign up for 1 hour shifts whenever they are available to help deliver leftover food from local businesses to homeless shelters, food banks, and faith organizations! Most importantly, as young people we can speak out against the corporations who are polluting daily on a large scale, both by pledging to not purchase from those companies or by writing to our local representatives to advocate for passing environmental bills. As Episcopalians, we can pledge to Care for Creation—what better way to celebrate Easter than by truly loving the planet we live on!

Reading The Passion

Holy Week begins with Palm Sunday. Pictured above are members of Canterbury Downtown who read The Passion of Our Lord, a scripted version of the Gospel that tells the story of Jesus’ last days on Earth. From his betrayal by Judas to the Chief Priests, to his trial before Pontius Pilate, which led to his being condemned, crucified and buried. This was the second time I had read The Passion as a member of Canterbury Downtown, but this time I read for the part of Pontius Pilate. Reading as Pontius Pilate, I didn’t want to humanize him, but it was difficult for me not to. Throughout the Gospel, Pilate denies the crowd their desire to crucify Jesus three times before caving in to their requests. Knowing what is right in our hearts and sticking to it when others are telling us differently is something we all face on a daily basis. Sometimes we cave and say yes instead of no. But for me, the most important part in reading The Passion, is that we are reminded of the power of salvation, that Jesus died for us. Now that Holy Week has started, this is something that I will be meditating on—our own personal salvation.

Maria Pellicier NYU’20

Lenten Update

With Easter Sunday quickly approaching, I’ve been thinking a lot about my Lenten discipline—did it do what I intended it to do? Giving up social media has definitely created greater time for reflection in my life; although I was able to find other ways to procrastinate besides just being on my phone. Not having access to my social media accounts made me aware of just how dependent I am on it to see what is going on in my friend’s lives. Since the start of Lent, I’ve spent more time reaching out to friends to hear about what is going on in their lives rather than just going to their Instagram page. This has been a time for me to re-examine how I create and foster connections in my life, and through reading devotionals with Our Bible App, also re-examine how I go about strengthening my relationship with God. While the expected outcomes I had ended up being a little different, I still feel strengthened in my relationships with others and with God.

Maria Pellicier, NYU’20