Growing In Community
Post

Growing In Community

When I accepted my year of service with the AV’s I had this picture of a three-person community already instilled in my brain. Then the news came in that I’d be living with one person and who to my surprise would be a man. I had this moment of panic because never in a million...

Small Town Familiarity In A Big City
Post

Small Town Familiarity In A Big City

When I first began the process for applying to this program and read the words “intentional community” in the description, I must admit I was nervous. Intentional community seemed so forced, and I started to think I would be walking into an entire year of discussion topics and ice breaker like events planned with two...

Rainbows, Butterflies, Compromise
Post

Rainbows, Butterflies, Compromise

Coming into the AV experience I was most nervous for community living. I studied education in University and I was raised Catholic, so I was not concerned about the service or spirituality aspect. I had lived with four different roommates throughout my University experience. I just wanted to live with people who cared about each...

All Four One, One Four All
Post

All Four One, One Four All

As I prepared to begin my year of service with the Augustinian Volunteers, I met up with an AV alumni to ask her some last minute questions and talk about the year to come. We talked about many things but one thing she said that stuck out to me was, “you learn that you are...

At the End of the Day
Post

At the End of the Day

At the end of the day, it’s all about friendships. If there is one school that embodies this idea in an amazing manner, it is St. Augustine High School, more commonly known as ‘’Saints.’’ At Saints, I have the good fortune of helping with community service trips, retreats, and ministry of presence as a Campus...

Diverse World: One Community
Post

Diverse World: One Community

A few grains remain in the hourglass as the twilight of my volunteer experience grows to close. As I reflect on the past nine months, I begin to question what I have learned and who have I become. Throughout this experience, I have worked at HIAS PA, a refugee resettlement in Philadelphia, PA. I recall...

We’re All in This Together
Post

We’re All in This Together

There have been so many lessons from my time as an Augustinian Volunteer, but one thing that stands brighter than others is the interconnectedness of our world and how we all fit together. Being an Augustinian Volunteer has taught me a great deal, especially how all of us are on the same team, moving towards...

Tying Shoes and Wiping Noses
Post

Tying Shoes and Wiping Noses

Being a preschool teacher sounds like it would be easy.  Reviewing colors, shapes, and songs everyday, what could be simpler?  Coming into this year, I expected my days to be spent playing with Legos and counting to ten. My reality, however, has been a completely different experience. To say that we preschool teachers are on...

A Journey Into the Unexpected
Post

A Journey Into the Unexpected

“Willingness to jump into all sorts of unexpected situations.” Though perhaps included as a catch-all in most job descriptions, as I look back at the description for my AV position at HELP of Ojai, it strikes me that this line captures an important theme – the unexpected – that has underscored my entire experience as...

Lessons From Outside the Classroom
Post

Lessons From Outside the Classroom

I decided I wanted to be a teacher when I was 17. I imagined growing up and having my own classroom. I thought about how I would decorate it, how I would arrange the desks, and how I would make sure that every student felt comfortable there. When I decided to spend the year as...