Corinne Cohagan

Student Blogger


All of my travels so far have been enlightening, teaching me things about the world and myself, both of which I am so grateful for. And as much as what I’ve experienced so far has exceeded my expectations, I did set off on this trip to Austria prepared for adventure. I was kind of ready for it, or at least ready for the unknown that it was to be. But it’s what I wasn’t expecting, the hidden treasures of life in the Kartause, that have turned out to be some of the greatest gifts so far. That’s what I want to share with you today: the unexpected gifts that I have received already from the Franciscan Austria Program. And hopefully in so doing, I’ll be able to give you a little taste of what Austria’s like for me.

Cohagan: The View from the Hilltop.

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.


Cohagan: Mission Territory.

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.


Cohagan: The Art of Juggling.

My dad can juggle.

That’s right, I’m talking clown quality juggling here. When I was little, he would juggle sometimes to make us laugh, and often his juggling balls and pins would make an appearance at a birthday party, much to my excitement.


Cohagan: “Walk very simply.”

It’s almost time to be heading home for Thanksgiving break. That is just so crazy. I think I’ve mentioned in all of my blog posts so far this semester how fast it feels like time is passing these days, and it continues to press on at an unnatural rate. But life is good! Even with all the craziness. As I begin to approach these final weeks of the fall semester, and it seems like there’s so much to do and finish before finals, I’ve been consoled by the words of St. Francis de Sales.


Cohagan: Where the Beauty is Found.

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?


Cohagan: “For My Power is Made Perfect in Weakness”

I’m back. Back at Franciscan after a wild and wonderful adventure that took me all over Europe for a whole semester. And life hasn’t ceased to be adventurous since. It’s funny being back though, there’s a beautiful kind of fullness that I almost wasn’t expecting. I’m not sure what I was expecting it to be like after Austria, but still.


Cohagan: Returning with the Imprint of Gaming.

The end of my semester abroad in Gaming.

I can’t believe it.

So much has happened this semester. I’ve done so many new things, seen so many beautiful places, made so many new friends, and encountered the Lord in a profound way in my life.


Cohagan: The Divine Mercy of the Cross.

Holy Week seems to be a fitting time to reflect on one of the biggest lessons I have learned in Austria thus far.


The Miriam Webster dictionary defines trust as the “belief that someone or something is reliable, good, honest, effective, etc”. And this is of course true, but the richness of our Christian tradition enlightens our understanding of trust, making it more expansive.


Cohagan: The Heart of a Pilgrim.

Austria changes you.

If you are open to it, it changes your heart. You are stretched and increased in ways you could have never imagined for yourself. And it’s not because of seeing so many sights and enjoying so much foreign culture.


Cohagan: Unexpected Gifts.

It’s been about three weeks now since stepping off of the bus and feeling the gravel of the Kartause courtyard under my boots for the first time. But the feeling of those little pebbles underfoot is becoming more and more familiar now with each walk to class, or Mass, or off for an adventure.


Cohagan: Packing My Bags.

“Are you excited!?” This question has been ringing in my ears for almost the whole semester now, whenever it comes up in conversation that I’ll be leaving to study abroad in Austria this January. Usually, I respond with a toothy grin and an “I seriously cannot wait.” And it’s true, I am excited. I can barely wait.