A few days later…
We’ve been back from Rochester, New York for a few days and I thought it would be helpful to reflect on my experience. As I look back on the week we spent with the Sisters of Saint Joseph in Rochester, there are lessons that I bring back to Helena: give generously, serve with a smile, and love continually.
I was fortunate to spend a week with thirteen outstanding Carroll College students who were eager to give of themselves each day. As I process the week and look ahead to my future, I can’t help but think that is the most generous gift that I can give others, the gift of myself. It was a great feeling to share ourselves with those we served, whether it was women in a house of hospitality, children at a daycare center, students in schools, clients at a community center, patrons of a soup kitchen, the sisters who hosted our group, or one another. I hope to listen to God’s call to give of myself more fully to others.
We’ve all heard the phrase, “Choose your attitude” time and time again. Our time of service and ministry was a great reminder to me about the importance of serving with a smile. My time at Nativity Prep, I was shown how students react to someone’s smile, something they unfortunately aren’t shown every day. Their reaction isn’t completely unpredictable; they smile back, which is an amazing reward. I hope as I serve others in the future, to do so with a smile on my face and in my heart so others know that I am happy in helping them.
It’s not always easy to love others. Occasionally, I catch myself making up an excuse to not love. I become selfish with the greatest gift God gave me, the ability to love. I was reminded on this trip the importance to love others first, just as God loves me. Not just when it is convenient or when it will benefit me, but all the time.
I had a great week serving and growing with some amazing people. We shared an abundance of laughs, a few tears, some early mornings and some late nights, and many prayers together. I can’t wait to do it all again!!
Thanks for all the support through prayers and generosity!