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Respect Life Week

Guest Blogger: Joe Day 
Every semester PC for Life hosts a week of events called Respect Life Week.  The purpose of Respect Life Week is to dedicate time for the celebration of all human life.
This year, RLW began with a trip to the Little Sisters of the Poor Jeanne Jugan Residence in Pawtucket, RI.  The Little Sisters care for the elderly, providing them with compassionate, Christ-filled care.  Members of PC for Life and Elderly Outreach joined the Sisters, staff and residence for Mass and lunch, followed by a tour.  I was struck by how happy all the residents were.  You could tell that they cared with dignity and love.  After our tour, we helped the residents outside and joined the Diocese of Providence for an hour of pray for life.  The response from those who drove by was overwhelmingly positive.
Monday, PC for Life released the March for Life applications at tables in Ray.  Applications can now be picked up in the Campus Ministry Center.
Students handing out cupcakes outside the library

Students handing out cupcakes outside the library

Tuesday was Cupcakes for Life.  PC for Life handed out over 250 cupcakes outside of the library with Pro-Life quotes.  Cupcakes for Life is a lighthearted, joyful way to celebrate the beauty and dignity of life.


Starting after the 9PM Mass on Tuesday and continuing until the 9PM Mass on Wednesday, PC for Life sponsored 24 hours of Adoration for Life.  With students signed up for hour slots, each dedicated to a specific life issue, Adoration for life is a beautiful way PC as a community devotes herself to prayer for life.  Several of my friends and I chose the 4-5AM.  Early morning hours are my favorite for Adoration because I can be alone with Jesus there in the Blessed Sacrament illuminated by the candles, shining in the silent darkness of the night.
Respect Life Week concluded on Thursday with a talk

Dr. Gondreau speaks about his son, Dominic

Dr. Gondreau speaks about his son, Dominic

by Dr. Gondreau of the Theology Department, sponsored by PC for Life and Special Olympics, on the Gift of Special Needs Children.  Dr. Gondreau gave a beautiful talk about his experiences as the father of a special needs child and his son, Dominic’s, embrace with Pope Francis.  ​

Upcoming: Adoration with Praise and Worship

praise and worship adoration

Upcoming: The Gift of Special Needs Children

gift of children

Ministry of the Week: Youth Education

ministry - emily

Coordinator:  Emily Hill ’15

Major: Psychology

Email: ehill2@friars.providence.edu

What is Youth Education?

Youth Education provides participants with the opportunity to further religious education in different parishes throughout Rhode Island.  In addition to teaching in the classroom, PC students will also be able to teach in retreat settings.

Why did you decide to get involved?

I taught Religious Education all throughout high school and was really happy that PC provided me with the opportunity to continue teaching.  Additionally it provided me with the opportunity to get to know the area that  I would call my home for the next four years and it allowed me to see other parts of Rhode Island that I wouldn’t have seen otherwise.

What are you looking forward to most about being involved with Youth Education this year?

I am really looking forward to fostering a community of teachers and people generally interested in furthering Religious Education of today’s youth.  I am excited to see this all form in the classroom and in retreats facilitated by Youth Education.

Upcoming Volunteer Opportunities:

There is an opening to teach Religious Education to 4th graders at Our Lady of Good Help Parish from 9:10-10:10.  Transportation is provided!


We meet once a month at 7:00pm on Wednesdays in Campus Ministry Room B.

Upcoming: Solidarity Supper

solidarity supper

Upcoming: Wilderness Retreats

wilderness retreat

Worship and Liturgy Presents: Open Mic Night

By Guest Blogger: Vanesa Zuleta

open micLast week was Campus Ministry’s first time sponsoring an Open Mic outside of Campus Ministry, and I have to say it has been one of my favorite things to participate in while here at Providence College. Last semester one of the goals of the Worship and Liturgy Cluster for Campus Ministry was to bring Campus Ministry out of Campus Ministry. Our goal was not to stay in the lower level of the church but to go beyond the walls of St Dominic to the student body, and connect on an even deeper level with the PC Community. And what better way to connect than through music? From this came the idea of an Open Mic, a night where PC students could stand before their fellow friends and present their talents, a night of fellowship and fun, a night of community.

So the date was set for October 1st and the emails were sent out and the posters were placed around campus. And we waited for people to sign up. Now in all honesty this was the first event I had ever helped coordinate on campus so I wasn’t getting my hopes up for a great attendance or a great number of people signing up to perform. So you can imagine my amazement when October 1st came along, and we had close to 20 people signed up to perform, a packed room with standing room only at some points, and people stopping in and running back to their dorms to grab their instrument so they too could perform.

Overall the night itself was a night to remember. The entire room was over flooded with laughter and applause, and everywhere I looked people were smiling and simply having a good time. As the night came to a close I took a moment to step out of the room and realize that PC is more than just a school: it’s a family. And with some hope, prayer, and community help, Campus Ministry had succeeded in its first Open Mic in McPhail’s. All I could think though was, this is only the beginning.

It really truly is.

Connections Retreat 2014

Connections leaders and participants

Connections leaders and participants

By Guest Blogger: Meghan Lescault

“CONNECTIONS!  RETREAT!  RETREAT!  CONNECTIONS!”  Anyone who has ever set foot in the midst of a Connections Retreat for more than thirty seconds will be able to smile and recall this endearing rallying cry repeated throughout the weekend.  Not only does it serve to gain the attention of retreatants, but it also serves as an expression of solidarity and team spirit.

Connections is one of the finer jewels of Campus Ministry at Providence College.  I’m sure we can all agree that the first few weeks of freshman year in college are some of the roughest, toughest weeks of life.  Keeping this in mind, the Connections Retreat is designed for freshman to come together in a comfortable setting, meet new friends, reflect on their faith, and make some…you guessed it…connections!

This year’s Connections Retreat took place from September 19 to September 21 at the usual lovely venue of the Toah Nipi Retreat Center in Rindge, New Hampshire.  One hundred freshman retreatants, twenty-four leaders, and two Campus Ministry staff members trekked up north to experience an unforgettable weekend of faith, fun, friendship, and of course food! (Toah Nipi is known for their culinary prowess.)  As a tradition, every Connections Retreat has a new theme each year, and this year did not disappoint with the theme of the Olympics.

The retreat kicked off on Friday evening in the Campus Ministry Center.  After everyone satiated themselves with copious amounts of pizza, we loaded up the buses and got psyched for what was to come.  After our arrival at Toah Nipi, the opening Olympic ceremony started right away.  Retreatants were divided up into teams, which dove straightaway into a fierce competition for the gold medal.  Each group had the task of creating a country.  Most groups based their country around their team color with standouts such as “Lime So Fancy” for the lime green team and “Blue-Knighted Kingdom” for the royal blue team.  After a night of unique and challenging Olympic events, the orange team took home the gold as the country of “Tropicania.”

Saturday began with a Mass celebrated by Fr. Justin Brophy and then retreatants participated in a paired walk where they had the opportunity to talk one-on-one with a fellow freshman and make some…here it goes…connections! (Are you sensing a theme yet?)  A little free time was provided to play sports, take out a canoe on the lake, or just chill.  One of the biggest hits of the weekend was the highly anticipated campfire on Saturday night!  Everyone gathered around the fire with guitars and marshmallows in hand, signing the night and making some good ole s’mores.

Sunday began with time to think about our own faith journeys and what this weekend had meant to us.  Small groups met up for the last time before the retreat came to an end with the Olympic closing ceremony.  Each retreatant, leader, and staff member wrote something that they would be taking away from the weekend down on a piece of either red, orange, or yellow piece of paper.  Everyone took turns sharing their thoughts with the entire group and placing their pieces of paper on the wall in the shape of an Olympic torch!  Although everyone was disappointed when it was time to take the bus back to PC, we all knew that we were taking away an abundance of happy memories!

The weekend may be over, but the memories, the friendship, and the…here it goes…connections made during this retreat will last a lifetime.  The Olympic torch has been kindled, and we are keeping it burning all year here at Providence College.  So for one last time this semester: CONNECTIONS! RETREAT! RETREAT! CONNECTIONS!

Go Friars!

Dominican Iron Chef – TONIGHT!!!


Father Brophy is one of the world’s greatest men. Just ask him and he’ll tell you himself. He does all things well. He’s a spiritual master, an eloquent preacher, an erudite scholar, a master brewer, and NCAA 14 champion. So it came as no great surprise when this Renaissance man won the inaugural Dominican Iron Chef competition. Yawn . . .

But now a challenger worthy of Father Brophy’s attention has arisen. Coach Ed Cooley, fresh off leading the Friars to their first Big East Tournament title in 20 years, has called out the champ. The two will square off at Raymond Hall tonight from 4:30-6:30. Each is preparing dinner for about 800 guests who, in turn, will cast ballots to determine the winner.

“I’ve beat the odds to get where I am in my life, but I fully expect that Dominican Iron Chef  will be the most difficult thing that I’ve ever done,” Coach Cooley might have said if we took the time to conduct a real interview. “I mean, look at Father Brophy. Yikes. That guy clearly knows his way around a kitchen.”

For those who can’t see the debacle in person, the event will be streamed live online in its entirety. Click here for the feed. (It should hold your attention for 7 or 8 minutes. After that, it’s just two guys cooking and being peppered with questions and insults by an untalented emcee.)

Come early, vote early and often, and everyone try not to get sick. And remember . . .

Go Friars.

Lenten Blog Series: A Reflection

Guest Blogger: Laura Wells ’14, PC for Life Coordinator

Each Tuesday, when I have lunch with the two little boys I babysit, the two-year old get a kick out of saying the grace-before-meals. He sits buckled in his high-chair, his legs swinging back and forth, his hand pressed together, waiting for the moment: “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit — AMEN!” — and joins in, touching his forehead and then enthusiastically clapping to finish the prayer off.

The sign of the cross. It’s a simple gesture, one that even a two-year old can do (and find endlessly entertaining — the choruses of “Amen!” (plus the exciting clap, of course) usually continue for a few more minutes after the rest of us have started eating). Yet this simple gesture is at the same time such a profound prayer.  We do it so often, it is easy to let the sign of the cross become effortless, automatic; I’m so thankful for those weekly lunches with that two-year old that make me slow down and reflect on the craziness of what I’d otherwise do on autopilot.

Yes — the craziness. Think of it: Christians take as their rallying sign, as their indentifying gesture, what was for the ancient world a symbol of extreme humiliation, of an ignominious criminal fate. When Christians made the sign of the cross, they were marking themselves with something that the culture didn’t find attractive, or upright, or noble. Remembering this heritage, when we make the sign of the cross we should bear in mind our calling to be counter-cultural, to stand up for virtue, truth and charity even when it is not popular or easy.

A twentieth century theologian, Romano Guardini, remarked: “We do it [the sign of the cross] before praying so that… we may put ourselves spiritually in order; focus thoughts, heart and will on God; after praying, so that what God has given us may remain within us…. It embraces the whole being, body and soul… and everything is consecrated in the name of the Triune God” (Lo spirito della liturgia. I santi segni, Brescia, 2000, pp. 125-126).

The ancient Greek word for sign was sphragis; this was also the term for a general’s name that would be tattooed on his soldiers. We’re called to be soldiers of Christ’s (2 Timothy 2:3). And the sign of the cross can be our reminder of that —  our “tattoo” marking us as His followers. Radical? –yes. Even slightly badass. (Am I allowed to say that on the camp min blog?) But true. Awesomely true.

Fight the good fight. Because we stand under the standard of Christ — the sign of the Cross.

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