Loving and Living Outside our Comfort Zone

“What has your volunteer year taught you about love?” That was the question I asked a panel of former volunteers during my final semester at St. Bonaventure University in Spring 2015. Among the panelists was an alumnus of FVM. Everyone gave thoughtful answers, and I was encouraged that I would not be alone in my experience of growing as a person in love and faith. Since that time, I lived for a year as an FVM in Camden, NJ, then a few years with the Franciscan Friars, and am currently in an interfaith community of graduates. Each year has been a different experience of learning and growth, even the growing pains along the way that have continued to help me better love others. I was raised in a small [...]

July 15th, 2021|

Living in Community

“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. 10 For if they fall, one will lift up the other; but woe to one who is alone and falls and does not have another to help. 11 Again, if two lie together, they keep warm; but how can one keep warm alone? 12 And though one might prevail against another, two will withstand one. A threefold cord is not quickly broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12) During the beginning of my year as a Franciscan Volunteer Minister, we discussed this Bible verse in relation to community life. It seemed to carry much weight to it, although only through the experience of living in community did I experience it firsthand. Living in community is a central part of [...]

June 30th, 2021|

A Good Path

 A few weeks ago, I was in a job interview and the interviewer asked me, "what's your five year plan? How does this job fit into your career goals?"  I hadn't really considered the question, and it brought back a lot of memories.  When I was a child, I never had a good answer to the common refrain of "what do you want to be when you grow up?"  I didn't know all the professions out there, how could I sort through and decide what I would most enjoy?  As a camp counselor helping fifth graders decorate a bulletin board under the heading, "when I grow up, I want to be..."  my contributions were the words "happy" and "gorgeous" next to their suggestions of "veterinarian," "teacher," and "doctor."  Nearing the end [...]

June 15th, 2021|

The FVM Poem

The 2020-2021 FVMs Live across the block from a guest named Hector And receive guidance from Katie Sullivan and Emma Edwards Because they’re the program directors Our site supervisor is Michael Duffy Now I had hoped for better I’m only kidding, on the inside he’s very loving Which is why guests ask to speak to him On a daily basis But when you hand him the phone at the Inn You’ll hear him talk and think, “How could you say this?” Over in Durham is our Brother, Hugh MacSherry We recently met up with him over zoom To hear about how he is faring He doesn’t have FVMs right now But he doesn’t go it alone, he has Shakira Who helps him press on He always plays Waka Waka [...]

May 30th, 2021|

A Sunday Reflection

Reflection by Kathryn Getek Soltis St. Thomas of Villanova Parish Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time October 24/25, 2020 Exod 22:20-26; 1 Thess 1:5c-10; Matt 22:34-40 I want to share some brief reflections today. I am not speaking for the anti-racism committee, but my reflections do grow out of the conversations of this group of parishioners. And these are conversations that we hope might expand so they can include the voices and reflections of our entire parish. So this is just an offering of one of our parish’s many voices. Our Gospel today provides the perfect foundation – love of God, love of neighbor. These are the loves that structure our entire lives as believers. And they are the loves that bring us together – here or livestreaming – as [...]

May 15th, 2021|
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