Students for Life hosted a movie night of sorts last Wednesday. The movie was Dead Man Walking, a critically acclaimed film based off of true events undergone by Sister Helen Prejean. Sister Prejean is played by the talented actress Susan Sarandon. Sean Penn plays Matthew, a convicted murderer who seeks Sister Prejean’s guidance.
I had seen the movie once previously, and remembered it as an emotional experience. I have had the “death penalty conversation” numerous times with close friends, family members, and teachers. It is always a touchy subject–of course, why wouldn’t it be–and it is not a surprise that so many people are unwilling to talk about it. At the very least, Dead Man Walking opens up the conversation and makes it virtually impossible to ignore.
Sister Prejean constantly struggles with her position. Matthew has asked her to be his spiritual guide, providing Sister Prejean with a moral dilemma. As you watch the film, you become more attached to not only Sister Prejean and her plight, but to Matthew. If you have not seen the film, you might be confused and surprised–how could you side with a convicted murderer?
I spent most of the film trying to decide my feelings. Where did I stand on the issues presented in the film? What would I have done if I were Sister Prejean? Would I have had enough courage to even meet with Matthew, to accept his calls? The only thing I was sure of when the movie ended was that I wasn’t sure. The death penalty is complicated. It is not black and white, but severely gray. That is precisely the reason why it is so hard for so many to organize their thoughts on the matter.
Among 32 other states in the U.S., Missouri has the death penalty. If you have not seen the film, I strongly encourage you to watch it and to start the conversation.
Meet Brooke Stochl. She is my best friend at Fontbonne. We first met about a year ago at the beginning of my junior year, and her sophomore year, through our involvement in FAB (Fontbonne Activities Board). She was the Films Chairperson while I was the Daytime Activities Chairperson. Currently during the 2014-2015 school year, Brooke is the President of FAB (I am so proud!) and I am in charge of all Live Performance events. Of course we were around each other for all the meetings and events, but we were probably considered acquaintances until this past February. That’s when everything changed. There was a conference in Boston that we both attended. Therefore, we naturally spent a lot of time together that week since we were the only ones on the trip (besides our advisor). And after we got back to St. Louis, we continued to hang out very frequently, on a professional and personal level. There are some pictures below of us working together last week throughout FAB’s Spirit Week. We were also bonding as best friends at the Cardinals game, Wild Country, and Neon Volleyball tournament.
Brooke has become that person that I talk to everyday about anything and everything. We can even carry on a conversation about nothing. Best friends have the skills to do that with each other. She is my rock and voice of reason. It’s amazing how quickly our friendship developed, and I’m thankful every day that it did. I appreciate her willingness to listen, give advice, support, and positivity. Brooke is such a fun person that I enjoy being around at any given moment. Also, I feel completely comfortable being my goofy self when in her presence. Ultimately, I am a happier person because she is in my life.
Many changes are bound to occur throughout college. As hard as it is to admit, some friends will just come and go. However, it is reassuring to know that there is someone that you know will always be there for you, even beyond the years at school. Everyone needs someone like this in their life, and I’m confident and pleased to say that Brooke Stochl is that person in mine.
When I heard about the Great Forest Park Balloon Glow, I was really excited: I have always wanted to see the big balloons! This Fall Spirit Week was full of fun events and I was lucky to be able to go to the Cardinal’s game on Tuesday and the Balloon Glow festival on Friday.
A group of friends and I walked together to Forest Park; it was a long walk, but the park is really beautiful, and it gave me the opportunity to see the Boathouse, the Art Museum and the fountain. We even saw a bride and groom taking pictures!
After some hours of waiting, all the balloons where finally there; we even had our own Fontbonne balloon with a picture of Gunner. However, the best part was nightfall, when all the balloons gleam at the same time! Walking between the balloons was breathtaking, and trying to capture the moment with a camera was quite challenging! It was one of those moments you have to record in your memory.
I am really happy to have had this experience and I look forward to discovering other fun festivities around St. Louis!
Balloons and Fontbonne tent
With this past week being Spirit Week at Fontbonne, there have been an abundance of events and activities for students to attend! My favorite was by far the Neon Volleyball Tournament that was held Thursday night. It was held in the gym with all the lights turned off except for a few black lights that made everyone’s neon gear glow!
I got a team of my closest friends together and dressed in neon from head to toe. We called ourselves the Orville Ready Blockers and prepared to dominate our competitors. We tried to develop a strategy but ending up just winging it in the end. I think we had more fun than we won games!
There was a big turnout for the event and everyone seemed to get in the spirit! While some of us got a little intense, I think everyone that participated in the tournament as well as spectators can agree that they had a lot of fun!