Heather (Prush ’96) Perry first heard the call to global evangelization after a pilgrimage to Poland in 2013. Today, she’s helping Franciscan University students make their missionary ideas a reality.
Mission is fruitful. Mission is hard. Mission is learning how to serve and to be served. Over ten-day break, I was on a team that went and ministered to high school students in Budapest, Hungary. The Austria program had five Eastern European mission locations this semester: two in Slovakia, two in Romania, and one in Hungary. Each mission varied in its experiences and ministry but all benefited from the raw experience of the Lord’s love and His ability to work through each missionary individually.
It’s been said to me before, usually by friends of mine or others that I meet who aren’t fully aware of what life at Franciscan is like, that this little University on top of the hill is a bubble. That it’s a collection of like-minded people and I would be almost kidding myself to be convinced that I’m not just developing an idealistic view of the world while I’m here. But this isn’t the reality of what Franciscan is, and what this University does for its students.
Pope Benedict XVI said, in his message for World Youth Day in 2009, “If Jesus has become your hope, communicate this to others with your joy and your spiritual, apostolic and social engagement. Let Christ dwell within you, and having placed all your faith and trust in Him, spread this hope around you. Make choices that demonstrate your faith.” Belize gave me this chance.
Where is the beauty? Where is the beauty in the all-nighters and the papers and the meetings and the job-searching and the stress that seem to have become the all too typical aspects of my life as of late? I’d been having a hard time finding it, to be honest. This semester has continued at a rapid pace, feeling more like a string of project after project than anything else. It’s been a bit exhausting. It even just sounds exhausting re-reading it typed out in this blog post. It doesn’t really sound beautiful. Right?
I was asked to give a testimony at this past summer’s Defending the Faith Conference on the way that Franciscan University has helped me grow in my faith and as a person. While preparing for this talk, I thought I’d like to share with you the same. Because this school certainly has changed my life!
Hello again everyone! I hope your Lent has been truly blessed so far. The semester continues to fly by, and it is finally beginning to feel like Spring! Franciscan had our Spring Break a couple weeks ago, and it has been fun to hear everyone’s stories ranging from crazy mission trip experiences to fun road trips and relaxing at home.
Well, spring break came and went… but it was no ordinary spring break. A week or so ago I was given the privilege of serving children of Haiti in an orphanage. It was a mission trip (not sponsored through the University) and man… talk about an eye opening and incredibly human experience.
There is only two months left in the semester, and it is only now dawning on me how little time I have left with these wonderful people in this amazing place that I have grown to love so much. I feel completely polarized – half the time I’m anxious to get on with life after graduation, while the other half of me doesn’t want to leave behind the fellowship and comforts of Steubenville.
Casey Staton, like Kathryn Carnell, is attending the 58th U.N. Commission on the Status of Women in New York City this week during spring break. This is his first post about what he has seen and learned from the experience. —Ed.
The Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) may as well be called the Commission on the Status of Money.