Friday, October 18, 2013

A Visit from FOCUS Founder, Curtis Martin, & Much More

The last two weeks have been blessed with many exciting events. I have been busy setting up one-on-one meetings with each of my Bible study members, holding events, and entertaining some very important guests. 

"Get to Know FOCUS"
On October 9th, the FOCUS team held a Wine & Cheese "Get to Know FOCUS" event for upperclassmen students. We shared testimonies about why we joined FOCUS and offered a Q&A session for the students to ask us anything about our lives as FOCUS missionaries. 

Birthdays, birthdays, birthdays
We have been holding many birthday celebrations for our students! This image is from the birthday of my roommate and student missionary, Lesley. She is such a joyful soul. :)

Natalie Visits from Boston
My sister, Natalie, came for a visit from Boston during ASU's fall break. We celebrated our German heritage at an Octoberfest celebration and explored much of the state's different landscapes. We made a visit to the mountains in Flagstaff, hiked the Grand Canyon, and trecked through Sedona with students from the Newman Center. 

NAU FOCUS Missions Fiesta
I was invited to share my mission trip testimony at the Northern Arizona University FOCUS Missions Fiesta on Tuesday, October 15th. I LOVED getting to see my dear friend and fellow missionary, Sarra Stanley, in the beautiful mountain air. Two students also joined me for the trip, and we enjoyed the luxury of seeing the aspen leaves changing colors in the Fall season. 

A Visit from FOCUS founder, Curtis Martin
On October 16th, the day we anxiously awaited, CURTIS MARTIN came to visit ASU! We enjoyed lunch with Curtis followed by a tour of the large ASU campus. After Mass in the evening, Curtis spoke to our students about how the college campus is the epicenter of the New Evangelization. Listening to the Holy Spirit speak through Curtis always impacts my heart in a new way, and the students walked away from the event awestruck and excited to participate in the New Evangelization. It was such a blessing to have him here in Tempe for the day!

Swaying to Country Tunes
Last night my teammate, Anna, and I attended the Jason Aldean concert with students. I loved getting a taste of some live sweet country took me right back home to the country dirt roads!

So much has been happening here at the ASU All Saints Catholic Newman Center, and there are so many exciting things to come. Stay tuned for more updates!

God bless,

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Moving Forward

Bible studies have begun, and events are in full swing here at ASU. Next week will mark the fourth week of my Bible studies. Currently I am leading three studies: two within the Barrett Honors College and one FOCUS Greek study. To make the girls feel special, I made them all little notebooks to use as a prayer journal. On the front inside cover I placed directions of how to pray the rosary, complete with a listing of all the mysteries. On the back inside cover I placed a quote from Pope Francis on World Youth Day in Brazil, and the Gospel presentation. 

The weekend of September 20th the FOCUS team and I served on the All Saints Catholic Newman Center's Freshman Retreat in Payson, Arizona. I LOVED spending the weekend up north on a mountain top, surrounded by fragrant pine trees and pleasant temperatures. It was the first time that I was able to cozy up in sweatshirt in months! (Never thought that would be something I would miss.) I led a small group and gave a talk about authentic freedom. Overall, the retreat was a great success, and we had the opportunity to get to know several new students.

Bus leaders/AKA Super heroes

Some of my Bible Study girls

My small group

Enjoying a hike

Nothing like roasting s'mores!

My cabin

My roommates-minus Lesley

The whole group

I was blessed to have a brief visit from my dear friend, Ali, last weekend. Ali is my Delta Gamma "daughter," and it meant the world to have her take the time to visit me all the way from Nebraska. Ali tagged along to my bible studies and our student missionary's Upper Room event. We also had the chance to do some hiking and exploration of the Tempe area. My heart is so grateful for such great friends the Lord has given me, and it was good to have a little taste of home through Ali. :)

At the top of Camelback Mountain

Enjoying some slickables!

At our monthly Upper Room event for student missionaries

At the ASU Newman Center tailgate

On Wednesday we celebrated our very first ASU FOCUS Missions fiesta. The event included, a FOCUS Missions promo video (which you can watch here), four testimonies of how a FOCUS Mission trip transformed one's spiritual life, horchata, snow cones, fajitas, piƱatas, a ¡Three Amigos¡ photobooth, and LOTS of salsa dancing! We also had quite a bit of fun with fiesta promotional materials.

In the midst of meetings with students and Bible studies, the team and I have been preparing for several more big events coming up, one of which includes our very own FOCUS founder, Curtis Martin! He will be speaking to the students of the ASU Catholic Newman Center on Wednesday, October 16th, to "Spark the Faith" here on campus. We will be welcoming him with lots of love, as you can see. 

Things here have been busy as ever, but I feel so blessed to work with such incredible students. Please keep us in your prayers as we continue the mission of Christ here on ASU's campus! God bless.