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Campus ministry explores needs

| Tuesday, February 17, 2015

The Office of Campus Ministry is taking initiative to keep up with the evolving spiritual needs of the Notre Dame community.

“The Spirituality Study is Campus Ministry’s way of intentionally engaging the Notre Dame community, to get to know our students for who they are, and consider ways in which we might support them in their faith, in their life and respond to whatever their needs may be,” senior and Hall Retreat intern Laura Gauthier said.

Campus Ministry associate director of communications Kate Morgan said the study seeks to better understand the practices and programs of the Notre Dame community in order to cultivate a better practice of everyday spirituality on campus.

“We hope the information collected in this study will help us to recognize what our students need from us and how we can better support them during their time at Notre Dame,” Morgan said. “We’re also very interested in hearing what’s currently working in Campus Ministry and what’s not.”

Morgan said she and the rest of Campus Ministry acknowledge that the study will not facilitate progress on its own.

“While we know this study won’t give us all the answers, we do think that learning more about student life will allow us to help students grow in their faith,” Morgan said.

Sophomore and Junior Retreat intern, senior Jordan Russell, said she is excited for an opportunity to examine and critique the current programs Campus Ministry offers.

“We want to help students grow in their faith in whatever ways they need,” Russell said. “Therefore, our hope is to uncover what those needs are in order to better aid the current and incoming students. I think this is a great chance for us to really ask the question, ‘who are our students?’” Russell said.

Morgan said the study is an opportunity to help better understand students and carry on the mission of Campus Ministry.

“I think it’s imperative for Campus Ministry to understand student interests, concerns, aversions,” Morgan said. “Knowing this will help us to assess our own programming and determine how we can better tailor it to meet their needs”

Though the study may engender major changes within Campus Ministry in the future, the study also serves the present University community, Gauthier said.

“Campus Ministry strives to serve its students as Christ would serve them, recognizing that every student on this campus is not only important, but beautiful,” Gauthier said. “This has been, and will continue to be, our goal. By engaging the unique stories that make up individual lives on this campus, we are excited to continue getting to know our students, loving our students and letting Christ show us the way to serve them best.”

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Rachel O'Grady is a senior Political Science major living in Ryan Hall and is currently serving as an Assistant Managing Editor. Hailing from Chicago (actual Chicago, not the suburbs) she's been a Cubs fan since birth.

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