As we move through our second semester, we are steadily preparing for Spring Break when many of our students travel back home or to other destinations with friends and family to celebrate this time of joy and rejuvenation. In the Catholic faith, this time of preparation is set aside for reflection; giving of time, talent and treasure; renewal; and repentance. These practices look different for each one of us. Many of us “give up” something like chocolate, TV, alcohol, etc. But why? The purpose it to remove distractions from our relationship with God and others. Other folks “do” something extra or more like going back to church, calling your grandmother weekly instead of monthly, or reconcile an estranged relationship. “Doing” something more restores the relationship with God and others if we have left it unattended.

My challenge to you, whether you honor lent or not, is to take time and review the relationships in your life. Are you giving life to those around you? Or are you making life more difficult for those you love? Start small with a hello to a stranger, a phone call to your brother, a card to grandma. Examine those relationships which are most difficult- perhaps your roommate? What have you contributed to this relationship and the environment of the room? It’s a complex dynamic and most all individuals are well intended. How can you offer grace and forgiveness- even if you have yet to receive an apology.  Maybe you can invite them to lunch before the break?

Our calling as Jesuit educated individuals is to be women and men for and with others. We are all trying to do the best we can with what we have. Relationship is one of the most impactful variables in our happiness. Find time this lent to pray or reflect on how you can be a better partner, friend, classmate, roommate, family member and teammate.

If you are staying in the residence halls for spring break, don’t forget to register for break housing! You can do so by logging into your Residence Account and completing the Spring Break Housing Application. Additionally, dining hours are available here! Have a safe and joyful break!

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