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faith

This semester, for me, has been plagued with the realization that in just one year, I’ll be graduating from Fontbonne. Now, all students have known that their graduation is 4 years, 3 years, 2 years, right around the corner; however, I have only seen the monolithic decisions that I’ll have to face upon receiving that degree. I’m bringing this up now as I’ve just returned and reflected off of a retreat that was sorely needed. The Rest and Renewal Retreat gave me a brief 24 hrs to stop, relax, and focus on the things that I want to have in my lifelong journey and those things that hitch a ride unwarranted. I was given a chance to see the many faults I have in being true to my: integrity, drive, and faith.

My integrity to do things like attending school events or talking to a friend about possible future plans to hangout. I seem to not be doing things that I have a genuine desire to do, I just do them because I’m asked or feel obligated when I’m not really interested. Growing up, I was told by my parents that I wasn’t capable to play soccer or learn an instrument. Believing this, I followed suit and just stopped asking and let others run my life. I’d been conditioned to listen, not to carry the conversation forward. I tried to fill in the gaps by doing what others wanted, not myself. This retreat made me realize how much I’ve been missing out on in my own life. I’m beginning to take charge and stepped down from positions and posts assigned to me, not ones I’ve chosen.

My drive has always been in question as if it was really mine or just a call to serve my friends. Recently, I’ve seen how attending many events on campus are only alternative means of interaction, in place of just going out for lunch or sitting in the AMC to talk. These events that I once thought to allow deep relationships to form only allow for the superficiality to come in crystal clear. People I once thought of as my best friends rarely speak, telling me it was much more on the surface. This retreat made me see that I desire to be in those smaller, intimate moments of conversation instead of these empty shell congregations.

My faith has been growing over the past year. Attending and helping plan retreats, mass, and choir have given a sense of loving friendship and community that the whole of Fontbonne are unaware of. Our school prides itself on the community that forms between students, but it rarely forms a as a result of the exclusivity that permeates many of our student orgs. Campus ministry is different in that its personal and beautiful. This recent retreats was needed to show me that my faith in community was simply in the wrong place. It was with acquaintances and not friends.

This retreat gave a system shock. I saw the misattribution of what I want in life, who I want in life, and who I want to lead my life. I hope to use these internal guideline to put forward a senior year that is more true to myself and not to others.

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Fontbonne Mission

by Mary on February 9, 2017

in Uncategorized

Let me first tell you what the mission statement is for this amazing university, as it has recently changed and is more concise now.

“Fontbonne University, a Catholic institution sponsored by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, is committed to the common good through the daily pursuit of transformative education, inspiring students to become global citizens who think critically, act ethically and serve responsibly.”

For me personally this is a statement that truly identifies our university and what the CSJ’s stand for as well as what they represent in this community.  As someone who has been involved in many service projects throughout the last three years at Fontbonne I know what it’s like to serve the dear neighbor without distinction and to treat others as if they are apart of the common good. I truly enjoy being there for others when I can whether it’s those in my campus community or those in the greater St. Louis community.  As a university Fontbonne really tries to instill in the focus on academic excellence and for the students to do their very best in the classroom and to not be afraid to as professors questions. Once I was able to get on that one-on-one level with teachers and really get to know them, then I felt they were inspiring me to demonstrate my best self.  Based on some of the things I have learned in class and things I have been involved in across campus I feel that professors truly are there to teach us how to fly into the world as educated global citizens.

As someone who grew up learning about the Catholic faith, I am proud to attend a Catholic institution and follow in the footsteps of the CSJ’s.  I am so thankful that I continued to stay involved in campus ministry throughout my time at this university, as it helped me to bond with others and grow in my faith.  Through ministry related events, I have had the opportunity to meet multiple of the sisters in my time here at Fontbonne and they all have interesting stories to tell about what it is like being a sister.  I am so proud to be able to say I am a Fontbonne student who practices my faith and am a part of a university sponsored by the Sister’s of St. Joseph of Carondolet.

Thanks for reading this weeks post.

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Hello, Griffins, and welcome back!  My second semester at Fontbonne is now nearly one-fourth completed, which is pretty hard to believe that much time has flown by already.  Homework, tests, deadlines, and learning new things is in full swing. I’m taking 18 hours this semester, so my time is much more limited.  It’s amazing how last semester has been put into perspective, and what I thought was busy three months ago pales in comparison to busy now…hello, 1:30 a.m. bedtimes! Overall, though, I have settled in and am pretty happy with my classes.  It’s nice to be in some that directly pertain to my major (dietetics), too.

Here’s a quick recap of what I did in the past month: We celebrated Christmas, my favorite holiday, and immediately afterwards headed to Colorado for a family ski trip.  I’ve been a snow-lover and ski fanatic since the itty-bitty age of two, so you could say it’s inherent to my nature.  This time, we tried out a new place for the first two days, Telluride.  We also skied a day each at Snowmass and Sunlight Mountain.  Amazingly, we were blessed with glorious sunshine and comfortable temperatures for all four days!  That’s a record for us.  It’s always amazing to be in God’s beautiful creation with my loved ones, and I’m so grateful we were able to find the time to get away for a bit before the craziness started.

After we got back, I did some unpacking and catching up on various tasks, and it wasn’t long before the spring 2017 semester began!  That brings us to the present, as I’m juggling work (I operate a house/petsitting business), class, and homework…annndddd not much else right now.  I still have my two horses, Blondie and Pearl, although I haven’t gotten a chance to do anything with them (other than feed them twice a day) for awhile.  Somehow, though, at the end of the day, it all works out.  Assignments get completed on time, critters get fed and cleaned up after, and the next day is a new day…a fresh start, a new chance to learn, grow, and be more.  (that just came to me…thank you, Fontbonne motto!)

~Anna

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Anna

Ten Things I’m Thankful for

by Anna on November 21, 2016

in College Life

Thanksgiving is just one week away!  It’s probably my second- or third-favorite holiday; I can’t decide between it and Easter.  Anyway, now is a great time of the year to count your blessings, so to speak.  I know it’s nearly the end of the semester, you’re probably exhausted, and you’re looking forward to some time with family…but in these busy moments, I think it’s especially important to look at yourself with a positive outlook.  In a world of negativity and brokenness, we, Fontbonne as a community, can spread some counter-feelings of optimism, respect, and encouragement.  And what’s a great way to start on that track?  Look inward, outward, and all around you, and see what’s good in your life.  I’d like to encourage you to make a list of your own in the next few weeks; maybe it would be appropriate for in between studying for finals…a nice way to take a breath, relax, and appreciate everything a little more fully.  It can be as short and simple as you like!

So here’s my “top 10” list of things I’m thankful for, in no particular order, by the way!

  1. Fontbonne:  I love the faculty, staff, my fellow students, the opportunities to pursue one’s passion and “serve the dear neighbor”, and the entire atmosphere in general.  Even on days when I’m really tired and just not feeling too upbeat, my mood ends up brightening by being on campus, going to class, and knowing I’m surrounded by wonderful, supportive people.
  2. My family & friends:  My parents, brother, godparents, and other friends (young and old) bring me so much joy.  They’re patient, kind, loving, encouraging, funny, and genuinely interested in hearing about the latest topic or subject I’ve covered in class.  I may not have a huge social web, but the relationships I have with my relatives and companions are deep and permanent.
  3. My horses:  Dear, sweet little Pearl-baby and Blondie-girl, who have been so cooperative and easygoing about my lack of time for them since school started.  They’re happy to just be groomed, petted, hugged, loved on, and told how much they mean to me.  Owning a horse is so much more than riding; in fact, it’s really quite irrelevant to me.  I think it’s way more important to have a strong relationship, built on trust and respect, than a surface level “hop on and ride off into the sunset” sort of thing.
  4. Good health:  I’m grateful for the ability to exercise every day and not be compromised in any way by injuries or illnesses.  My first semester at Fontbonne is nearly over, and I have not gotten so much as a sneeze, which I’m pretty proud of…especially considering how little sleep I’ve recently been getting!
  5. Freedom:  I’m thankful for all of the men and women who have served or are currently serving in our military, protecting and preserving my rights.  I’m really glad for my, your, and everyone else’s ability to voice their opinions and beliefs.  Now more than ever, we need to ensure this right does not get lost or suppressed for anyone; but even more importantly, we need to be civil and respectful when speaking with someone who may hold a different set of beliefs.
  6. Faith:  This ties into #5 above (freedom).  Every Sunday morning, I can go to church with my family to experience communion and fellowship with other believers.  I can be refreshed for the coming week, forgiven of my sins, receive the Lord’s Supper, and encouraged to live a life of grace and love.  My right to worship is not infringed upon, and for that I am appreciative.
  7. Sunrises & sunsets:  For all the darkness and gloom surrounding winter, you have to admit we have some of the most spectacular sunrises and sunsets.  Colors of red, orange, golden, blue, pink, purple, and more set the sky on fire and always make me hopeful for the day ahead.  In that quiet stillness, there is peace to be found.
  8. Home sweet home:  I have a roof over my head, heat and air-conditioning for all seasons, abundant clothing, running water, electricity, Internet service, and so many other creature comforts.  We take these for granted far too much.  Remember that there are millions of people all around the world who do not and may never experience these everyday conveniences.
  9. Food:  Once again, just how many people do you think do not have access to quality food and water like we do?  I’m not trying to shame you for enjoying the bountiful feast your mom or grandma prepares for Thanksgiving…I think it’s one of the best times to come together as a family for fellowship and yummy goodness.  But maybe after that final piece of pumpkin pie, consider volunteering for a food pantry or donating to a charity that seeks to improve the lives of people who aren’t in the same fortunate position we are.
  10. The Future:  I’m thankful to be able to pursue my studies in dietetics and history, two passions of mine, and eventually help people live their lives to the fullest.  I’m thankful for classes that challenge, push, and mold me into a version of myself I never dreamed I would be.  I’m also thankful for the opportunity to share my musings about the future with all who read this blog…you.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Blessings,

~Anna

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Happy Halloween!

by Anna October 26, 2016

Okay, so it’s not Halloween quite yet…I know!  But if you’re not a celebrator of the holiday itself, it’s not a huge deal.  I prefer to think of it as part of the whole fall experience — a specific day to go all out and celebrate fall.  I am not a fan of haunted houses, […]

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Inspiring Education

by Claire October 12, 2016

As I am a sophomore in college, there are a variety of educators who have influenced me. One of the most impactful teachers was an english instructor my senior year of high school. Thinking my writing skills were at the level they needed to be at, I was shocked when I did not receive the […]

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What I am involved in

by Fontbonne University October 16, 2015

I am not involved in any academic organizations but I am involved in the media ministry at my church. I enjoy this ministry because I assist the pastor with conveying God’s word. I ensure that scriptures are presented as the pastor delivers his message. I display lyrics to songs and church activities on the projector […]

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Be Something Beautiful

by DeMarcus September 28, 2015

“There could never be a more beautiful you”  is the lyric sung by Christian artist Johnny Diaz in his song “Beautiful You.” Last week, this lyric constantly played in my head over and over. While the song is a toe tapper, I started to think about times I tried alter myself to blend in but […]

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Theme Song

by Alumni Posts April 23, 2014

If I had a theme song it would be “Alien” by F.L.A.M.E. This would be my theme song because I am not like everyine else. I don’t party too much or drink every weekend and have real life issues that go on. I have a strong faith in God and I am not ashamed of […]

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Back in the St. Lou Groove

by Alumni Posts January 21, 2014

Hello again, readers! It’s so nice to not only be starting a new year, but a whole new selection of classes. Break was most definitely not long enough for a large portion of us I would assume! Even so, it was much needed and well-deserved. What are your resolutions for 2014? Maybe you only have […]

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Students writing for Real Life at Fontbonne are paid a small fee for each post by the university.