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fontbonne andrewCollege is all about experiences that help you grow as an individual, that broaden your horizons and provide you with an expanded mental landscape that helps you process the world better than ever before. … Right? 
 So, I’ve started attending Disciples, Fontbonne’s weekly faith-sharing group. They meet Tuesday nights in the Interfaith Chapel, in Medaille, at 8:30 pm, and usually go to around 10. For people with time commitments and early bedtimes, this can be a little bit of an issue, but I thought that the commitment to this group would be worthwhile if it helped me explore my faith. 
 Before I continue, I need to elaborate on “my faith”. I am a Baha’i. To explain that briefly, the Baha’i faith essentially is the next step in a ‘religious series’ which begins with Hinduism and continues through Islam. Describing it this way is important, because part of the Baha’i faith is the belief that all the great world religions worship the exact same God, and were led by prophets that God sent down who taught religion in a way that made sense at the time given the current culture. So, for instance, not only are Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed all prophets of God, but so is Zoroaster, Krishna, Buddha, and Abraham.  The Baha’i faith reaffirms the core values of each of these religions as important lessons from God, and promotes the unity of all religions and all people across Earth. There’s much more to the faith than this, of course, and I welcome you to investigate for yourself!  
 So, back to Disciples: I sometimes struggle with this faith-sharing group. I’ve come to realize that here at Fontbonne, “faith-sharing” does not mean “let’s talk about how you’re Muslim, and you’re Buddhist, and you’re Christian, and you’re Jewish.” It means “Let’s talk about how you’re Protestant and I’m Catholic.” I suppose I should’ve foreseen this, since the group is called “Disciples” and all, but nonetheless this is naturally a little frustrating for me. While we do discuss a lot of topics that aren’t necessarily “Christian-only” at Disciples, the way we think about issues—for instance, the meaning of beauty—ends up being through a Christian lens; we’ll look at Bibles for passages to help support our ideas, and only Bibles. The group is for Christians, and while I don’t feel rejected by any means, I also feel that I’m not understood because of my different beliefs. 
 But I’ll keep going to Disciples, because I like the group, because I like the people. Say what you will about Christianity (particularly about Catholicism), but the Baha’i view on it is that Jesus was an incredible teacher who brought a powerful message about Love to humanity, and so taking a little extra focus on that isn’t a bad thing. Everything else in Christianity besides the idea of love really is just irrelevant; if you can learn the love part, then everything else on ‘being a good person’ comes kind of naturally. I think Disciples can help further my understanding of love—and maybe yours. So, hey! If you’re free on a Tuesday between 8:30 and 10, swing by the Interfaith Chapel!

For more religious events on campus, check out campus ministry’s webpage!

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This Saturday, I went to the Fontbonne Men’s and Women’s soccer games at Gay Field. fontbonne mike The women played a spectacular game and won 11-2 against Eureka College.  As a result, the women kept their fourth place status in the SLIAC and advanced to the postseason tournament.  The men also played brilliantly against Eureka, posting a 4-0 shutout.  Zach was solid in goal recording yet another shutout.  It should be interesting to see how the two teams compete in the postseason.  I am hoping that the teams can pick up some solid momenturm entering November.  The men missed qualifying for the national tournament last season and I am hoping that they will qualify this year.  Games will be played next week at Webster. It is my hope that we will draw large crowds from Fontbonne to support both teams.  Watching the soccer games is so exciting and fun for all of us at Fontbonne.  Sports events offer us wonderful opportunities to show our school spirit and support. 

For more on Fontbonne sports events, check out the athletics webpage!

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fontbonne andrewWhen I was an incoming freshman, so many years ago—and by that, I mean last year—Fontbonne was in its second year of the Dedicated Semester, in which the entire campus takes a focus on a particular issue for the duration of the fall semester. To my understanding, the first Dedicated Semester was about the Jewish population, in St. Louis, America, and around the world; last year’s Dedicated Semester was about the Millennium Development Goals, the United Nation’s 8 goals for world improvement. This year, meanwhile, has set its focus on the Immigrant Experience, looking at the lives of those who have come to America to call it their home.
As a freshman, I was heavily incorporated into the 2008 Dedicated Semester on the UN Millennium Development Goals. I attended almost every single event and felt very much incorporated into the program. My inclusion began with our summer reading, for which Fontbonne sent us—us being all the incoming freshmen—a book about the Lost Boys of Sudan and their struggles. During freshmen orientation week, we discussed that book, beginning our experience with the Dedicated Semester.
As a sophomore, I—and the rest of my classmates, by and large—missed out on that initial experience. Frankly, I didn’t and still don’t feel like I’m missing much. While the Immigrant Experience is a positively fascinating subject and extremely significant when it comes to understanding the changing face of America, I just haven’t been motivated to get involved what with all my other classes already going on. Don’t get me wrong: I enjoyed the Dedicated Semester experience. But as of now, Fontbonne has it mostly set up as a kind shared experience for the incoming freshman class. I am not part of that class, and so this is not my time to be involved.
I fully support Fontbonne’s continuation of the Dedicated Semester. It sets the stage for students’ college experience. To me, it really brought out the meaning of “Learn More, Be More”, Fontbonne’s [perhaps over-cited but still appreciable] motto. Thanks to the global focus the Dedicated Semester took in 2008, I was able to learn about something totally beyond the scope of my classes. It broadened my horizons as a student, forcing me to keep in mind that there was a world beyond my world, and no matter how much I might feel trapped by books, papers, and exams, that world beyond would always be there and I could always still do my part. I only hope that the freshman going through the 2009 Dedicated Semester walk away with those same sentiments—I hope they benefit from this and come to appreciate it the way I did.

Learn more on the current Dedicated Semester on Immigrant Experiences at the Fontbonne Homepage!

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On Friday October 9, I attended the Naturalization Ceremony. Over 75 people were becoming citizens fontbonnemaryalicein Fontbonne’s gym. That was pretty cool, I thought. It was a very short ceremony. I was expecting the ceremony to last at least two hours but it ended up being right under an hour. There were opening comments, Dr. Golden spoke, and then there was a motion made. The judge granted the motion and then she went over the duties and rights that everyone now has as an American citizen. The Pledge of Allegiance was said and the National Anthem was sung. The just recessed and then names were called to come and get their certificates saying they were now citizens of the United States of America. I am very glad that I went to this ceremony because I am not sure if I will ever have the chance to go again. It was a very interesting ceremony and I was glad I could partake in the ceremony and see these people starting their new lives as American citizens.

Start your new life at Fontbonne! Apply today!

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Mike- Reflection on Naturalization & Ded. Semester

by fontbonneuniversity October 26, 2009

I believe that the current dedicated semester on the Immigrant Experience has been very interesting thus far.  I have only attended two of the events right now, but these two events were enlightening.  The first event I attended was the panel discussion on the meaning of immigration.  Several faculty members discussed their views and beliefs [...]

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MiRita- Made the Right Decision

by fontbonneuniversity October 5, 2009

When I graduated high school in 2005, I decided to take a semester off before going to college for personal reasons. After many people thought I wouldn’t go to school, I decided to go to Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph, Mo in the spring. I traveled there by greyhound, not having visited even [...]

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Andrew- Check Out Your Opportunities

by fontbonneuniversity October 5, 2009

I personally never went to Fontbonne’s open house. Instead, I flew in from New York and received a fantastic tour from the lovely Michelle Palumbo (if you’ve never met her, I might recommend you swing by the admissions office and pay her a visit!) But, even without having attended Fontbonne’s open house, I can still [...]

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Mike- Why Transfer Students Rock

by fontbonneuniversity October 5, 2009

Transfer students are important to Fontbonne for a variety of reasons.  Transfer students offer this campus-wide community many different talents and abilities.  Personally, I know two transfer students on our basketball team that are extremely talented and will help us immensely this season.  Chris of the basketball team transferred from Missouri Southern and was nominated [...]

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Andy- Open Houses & Missing Class

by fontbonneuniversity October 5, 2009

Before entering this amazing institution, I attend my own personal tour of the campus given by my neighbor.  I had a great time because it was extremely relaxed and there was no pressure added to attend the school.  After that impromptu tour, the admissions office contacted me and I went in that next week to [...]

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Mike- Learning & Sharing Insights with Others

by fontbonneuniversity September 1, 2009

The most interesting class I am taking this semester is Introduction to Religious Studies.  It is an Honors course with freshmen and sophomores.  Dr. Randy Rosenberg is our professor and is a delight to have in class.  First, the context of the course is awesome.  It consists essentially of reading articles, books, and essays about [...]

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