Welcome to website for the Charlotte Area Catholic Campus Ministry, part of the Office of Campus and Young Adult Ministry for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte. We seek to serve the spiritual needs of Catholic students, faculty, and staff, of Johnson C. Smith University, Queens University of Charlotte, UNC Charlotte, and Wingate University.
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Welcome Back from Fr. Innocent
It looks like ages since the last time we came together as a community. Indeed, the circumstances surrounding our extemporaneous exit from the university premises in the last semester were evocative of the Jewish exodus experience in the Book of Exodus. They hurriedly left Egypt soon after their Passover meal at midnight; they all moved out of Egypt with little or no preparations. Similarly, we hastily vacated the campuses once the instruction came for everyone to take cover against the impending enemy virus disease, the Covid-19. Public places and events were deserted, inclusive of schools, universities, churches, stadiums, and even markets. Everyone was seeking shelter for safety. Thank God we are all safe and sound today. Yet, during the period, we did not abandon our missionary course. Instead, our mission engagements continued in the virtual world. For as St. Paul writes, “The word of God cannot be chained” (2 Timothy 2:19), even if we all are. We are thankful to all those who still created the time to join us on zoom for the rest of our activities during the trying period. Of course, the parable of the sower readily comes to mind here that the thorns and difficulties of this life could choke some people in their faith practice. But in our case, they are unable to stop us from practicing the word we received. Thanks be to God for his grace.
This semester, we are taking up a new theme based on the campus ministry 3-year cyclic course of study. The CCM alternates three themes in her three years learning program. These include the themes of theology, morality, and liturgy. In theology, we learn about our faith in God, while the theme of morality helps us to apply what we have learnt to our day to day life; but when we turn to the liturgical theme, we put our faith into action through prayer and the service of God. This academic year, from Fall through Spring, we shall dwell on the liturgy, prayers, and the sacraments. Our Mission Statement is to establish a life of intimacy with God through prayers, the Sacraments, and the Holy Scripture. As a way to gain a safe entry into a theme that is so wide, so deep, and highly exalted all at once, I have chosen to begin with the model of prayers given to us by the Lord himself, “The Lord’s Prayer.” The apostles asked the Lord to teach them how to pray, and he taught them the “Our Father.”
The “Our Father,” which is also popularly referred to as the Lord’s Prayer is at the same time a prayer and a model of prayer. It is the prayer Jesus would want his followers to pray all the time. It is also a model of prayer for the disciples of Jesus to follow in praying to the Father in Heaven. I have broken the parts of the “Our Father” into topics/themes for our weekly reflections during meetings. I have also invited some guests to speak to us on these weekly themes. It will be awesome, just like in the last semester. But this time all the conversations will be virtual. As much as it is beautiful to come together in the concrete world, at this time we would want to be very careful to see that everyone is safe from the pandemic. For this reason, most of our meetings this semester will be via Zoom. I know that we are all zoom tired and exploited. But that’s the life of today until a bigger solution to this unprecedented situation is achieved. We may still come together to pray the rosary and have adoration, but that is when proper arrangements are cautiously made for social distancing practices.
Of course, the pandemic has posed a greater challenge for every one of us to be more active and engaging. This challenge is about becoming disciples and an evangelizers, just like the first Christian community. We will have the duty not only to be faithful followers but also to reach out to others to join us. We will have to bring more followers for Jesus. The office of the campus ministry may not be able to relate directly and establish the usual connections with students due to restrictions brought by the Covid-19. But you, students, can still have a great way of accomplishing the same feat. Consequently, you are now our eyes, hands, feet, and voices in the campus. Jesus needs you now as never before. Hope you will accept the invitation. Be sure to reach out to one or two students weekly to inform them of our meetings on zoom. God bless you for doing this.
Finally, we will not forget to welcome all the returning students back to school. In a special way, we are glad to welcome the freshmen and transfer students to UNCC, the Wingate University, and to the Campus Ministry. Trust me, you will love it here. The campus ministry is also here to help you feel comfortable and to acclimatize quickly in your new environment. Be sure that God is always with you. Take time to find good friends who share the same focus for resounding academic success and good life with God and neighbor with you; and where to find them is not too far. The Catholic Campus Ministry students are there. God bless you all as you begin this unusual academic season. Thank you.
Fr. Innocent Amasiorah