November 20, 2017

November 20, 2017

Center for Campus Ministry News for November 20, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving from the Center for Campus Ministry!

Center for Ministry

Center for Campus Ministry News for November 20, 2017

What's News in Campus Ministry this Week

Thoughts From Our Chaplain

Peer Ministry Uno Tournament!

Have You Ever Seen A Poetree?

Here's the Rest of the Peer Ministry Team

What Are YOU Doing for Spring Break?

Meet Some of This Year's VISION Leaders

Tommie Disciple is Tuesday!

Advent Morning of Reflection Opportunity

From Our Chaplain

Fr. Larry Blake

Human Discourse Does Not Need To Be A Battlefield

Recently while working out at the AARC I was listening to Ryan Tedder's "Battlefield" through my headphones.

"Don't try to explain your mind
I know what's happening here
One minute, it's love
And, suddenly, it's like a battlefield"

"One word turns into a war
Why is it the smallest things that tear us down
My world's nothing when you're gone
I'm out here without a shield, can't go back, now"

And it got me thinking about relationships; not just between couples, but between friends, fellow students, and people who perhaps see the world through a lens different then our own.

Why do things so quickly go sour where civil discourse should rule?  I think Tedder has a clue in the next verse of his song:

"Can't swallow our pride
Neither of us wanna raise that flag, mm
If we can't surrender
Then, we're both gonna lose we have, oh, no"

Pride so often gets in the way of mutual respect and understanding.  Yes, there are differences between people and these are real.  However, each of us has been created with a God-given dignity and is worthy of respect. 

So rather than running to get our body armor when we think we are talking with someone who has a view which is a counterpoint to our own, try surrendering to the notion that we can learn from each other and that human discourse does not need to be a battlefield.

Peer Ministry UNO Tournament

Monday November 20th 7-9pm

Anderson Student Center: Dorsey Commons on the second floor

Contact Person: Liam Skulley

Description: Come join the Peer Ministers for fun night of UNO. The tournament will begin promptly at 7pm when all the rules and format of the tournament will be explained. Come to compete for the first place prize or just come to have a great time with friends!

Have You Ever Seen A Poetree?

By Josh Crespo, Peer Minister

The "Poetree" is nothing but a tree with empty branches. Students will be able to hang their poetry on the tree so it can represent the nourishment a tree provides. Students will have the opportunity to reflect on the quotes they love, and why the quotes are so important to them. "

 Stop by the Center for Campus Ministry office in the Anderson Student Center [Room 207] to see the tree and if you feel inspired, add your quote to the branches. The tree will be on display through the month of November.

Meet the Rest of the Peer Ministry Team

Previously we introduced you to four of our Peer Ministers. Here's the rest of the team. If you see any of them out and about around campus, stop and say "Hi". Watch for different programming opportunities in the Residence Halls and around campus.

Emma Bjork

Hi! My name is Emma Bjork and I am a sophomore here at St. Thomas. I am majoring in neuroscience and plan on attending medical school. I love working with people and being able to play a role in their faith lives. In my free time I love to waterski and spend time on the lake. I recently have started playing golf and I love to curl up with a good book. I am looking forward to connecting with everyone and working to bring people together through Christ! I can't wait to see what He has in store for us this year! 


Josh Crespo

Hola, Buenos días! My name is Joshua Crespo-Arreola and I am blessed to be member of the Peer Minister team. I am currently a sophomore majoring in Biology and Justice & Peace Studies. I was born in Los Angeles, California on the day of the angels in the city of the angels. I am Mexican, which means I enjoy a mean meal and love representing my roots. The University of St. Thomas has been my dream school ever since I was 14 years old. I am proud to serve and fully engage in the Peer Minister team this school year. As a catholic retreat leader, my goal is to provide an inclusive and safe environment for everybody. To share and expand faith on campus. I wish you all the absolute best, and please do not hesitate to say hi!



 Maddie Cook

Hello and welcome! My name is Maddie Cook, and I am a senior studying Operations and Supply Chain Management. I will be living on the second floor of Grace Hall. One of my main hopes for my last year at St. Thomas is that God would use me in many ways to show His unconditional love and grace to the students around me, especially those in Grace Hall. I hope to build strong relationships, and be a support and encouragement to the people surrounding me, no matter what their faith background. Do not hesitate to connect with me for anything from needing an ice cream run, to deep conversation, or if you need a late-night study buddy. I hope to see you and get to know you better. Keep your eyes peeled for me during move-in, and make sure to shout my name really loudly if you see me around campus!


 Sam Shay

I'm Sam - I'm a junior this year going for a degree in both COJO and Catholic Studies, and I'll be one of the Peer Ministers in Brady this year. If you come visit, you may catch me playing video games, whistling, talking through life stuff with people, dancing, and eating dried mangos (seriously, dried mangos are the best), as those are all things I love. Foremost, however, I am a lover of my Faith, and it inspires me to be Christ to my neighbors as well as I am able. If you're reading this, you're my neighbor - please come talk to me sometime!


Thinking About Your Spring Break Plans?

Sometimes it's nice to plan ahead early.  If you've been thinking about what you would like to do for your spring break, please consider applying for a VISION trip.  This year, our global community-building service trips will be taking us to the following sites: Alamosa, Colorado; Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona; Crow Creek Reservation, South Dakota; Chicago, Illinois; White Rose Farm, Missouri; Memphis, Tennessee. 

Applications are not due until February 16th, but it is never too early to start thinking about it!


Let's Meet Some VISION Leaders

 Meet the VISION Student Directors

‌ Alli 


"I feel so lucky that VISION found me as a freshman. Now as a super senior, I'm grateful to have seen how the program has changed over the last 5 years, and how much the program has changed me. The six components seemed like a fine and dandy way to live for 2-3 weeks while on my first trip, though I thought it would end there. Not long after that trip, however, I realized that these six components had manifested themselves in so many different ways in my day-to-day life. VISION has opened my eyes to the problems that can come with service trips and volunteerism; it has shown me first hand both the beauties and the struggles of cultures different than mine - as near as South Dakota and as far as Ecuador; it has allowed me to build lasting community with fellow Tommies and has given me many places that I can call home. Most importantly, VISION has challenged me to embody these ideals in my everyday life. It's been a simple, yet radical shift that has profoundly impacted my life, and I wouldn't change a single second of any of it!



"VISION saved me. I was a Freshman feeling alone and out of place, here at St. Thomas. All throughout J-Term of my freshman year, I was considering transferring. Then I took my first VISION trip to Alamosa, CO. On that trip, I learned so much about myself, the members in my group, and the people of Alamosa. I remember thinking to myself just how happy I was on that VISION trip and how I had not remembered the last time I was that happy. Since then, I have become a Student Leader, as well as a Director of VISION. I know how much VISION impacted me and ultimately saved me and want to be able to lead and help others who are in similar situations. I honestly have never been so excited in my entire life than I am for this year's VISION trips. I cannot wait to continue to grow as a person and as a leader throughout this year in VISION."



"With every VISION experience comes new challenges to view the world through unfamiliar lenses. That is such a beautiful thing. I have come to embrace a world of new places, communities and cultures. These have been made up of people who have dedicated their lives to social and environmental justice work and the bettering of our world. From them, I have learned. So much. Most importantly, I have learned how to always work to be a better version of myself, and to love myself no matter where I'm at in the growing process. I am so grateful for the VISION program and the unconditional love that has come from it for me and so many others."

It's Time for Tommie Disciple

‌Mary in the Church's Advent Prayer:

Texts, Hymns, Devotional Practices

There is still time for faculty and staff members to RSVP to join us for this morning of reflection as we begin the advent season.

Online Interactive Advent Retreat