Finding God on Gannon’s campus: Connecting with others through vulnerability is key to life


This time last year, I was preparing myself for an experience that, in hindsight, was going to change my life.
My junior year, I was a little lost.
With no idea what to really do, I decided to take a chance and sign up for a retreat called Metanoia.
It is a biannual Campus Ministry retreat that is led by past participants, with a great sense of comradery existing among all members.
Looking back on it today, I can honestly say that God touched my life through giving me a new awareness of love and how to spread it to others.
Fast forward one year and here I am, once again, preparing myself for a life-changing experience.
However, now I sit on the other side.
Being asked to be one of the student leaders for Metanoia 12 was quite the honor and honestly rather scary.
Whenever I have been on a retreat, I have glimpsed into the hard work that goes on behind the scenes.
And trust me, we have been putting in a ton of work that many are not aware of.
Monday, our group gathered for one of our final meetings to plan some key items.
We all laced up out boots and crunched through the snow to get to campus minister Emily Muntean’s apartment at Finegan Hall.
Huddled inside on couches and talking, I felt my heart being opened to the wonderful people I was surrounded by.
The true beauty was in how vulnerable we were able to be with one another.
And that is exactly how God intended it.
I have always heard that vulnerability is strength and also is key to human connection.
God did not make us to be indefensible robots, but rather emotional human beings who all have a story to share.
As I sat there on that couch, I looked around and realized that the minute you truly know someone’s story, there is no way to not love them.
This was lived out all throughout the gospel as Jesus led his ministry by wholeheartedly connecting with the people he encountered.
He met those who were most vulnerable: lepers, prostitutes and those who had just lost family members.
And it was in those moments that he could truly show his glory.
It is within our own moments of connection that we find God’s glory.
If there is one thing that God would probably want us to take away from the th0-some years that Jesus walked this earth, it would be to love him and to spread that love to others.
As a new year has started, I pray that you find a way to develop that connection in Christ.
Whether it is through a retreat, spending time with classmates or talking to a stranger, don’t be afraid to be vulnerable.
Sit down and truly take the time to hear someone’s story.
I bet there is no way you won’t love them.
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