It's been a while since I posted anything. I have been busy enjoying being back in the good 'ol U.S. of A! I have loved every bit of being in 'Merica! Paying in dollars, eating In'n'Out, speaking English and using my blow dryer (random, but seriously it's the little things). Since I've been home I have had a lot of time to reflect on this past semester. Here is my final reflection from this semester...
Initially when I thought of my semester abroad I envisioned the timeless art, the picturesque landscapes, the exotic foods and the historic churches. When I continued to reflect on this semester abroad I realized that the things that impacted me the most were the everyday people I met. From my interactions with strangers, acquaintances and new friends, I became aware of the beauty and charity of people of every culture. Here are a few of the people I met that have left a lasting impression on me.
|Chiara and I with 2 of her friends in front of Piazza Pitti|
A group of people that left an impression on me were the staff at Villa Morghen. Sharing everyday life with them taught me a lot, and I have so many great memories from my time in the Villa. In particular, Marina, the housekeeper, showed me so much love. The language gap was very apparent in our interactions, but she loved me so well in spite of it. She would often call me “Tesoro,” a familiar term of endearment in Italian, and always greeted me when I came for meals. I truly learned to appreciate our silent conversations and unspoken appreciation for one another.
Another couple I met in Italy left me with so much joy, I can't help but to share it! While in line for confession at Our Lady of the Angels in Assisi I met an adorable Irish couple. The husband offered me a holy hard with a prayer from a saint to make a good confession. As I was entering the confessional he said to me, “I’ll pray for you to make a good confession, and you can pray for me.” This man’s faith in the communion of saints and in the sacraments was so beautiful. Even in this 5 minute encounter, this couple left a lasting impression on me.
So many people influenced my time abroad and impacted me forever. Overall I witnessed God’s love through the many different people that I met, experienced the love and kindness of many different cultures and learned to appreciate the universality of charity. For some reason, God put these people in my life to teach me something. Whether it was how to receive love differently, not to judge based on appearance, or to just appreciate the little things in life, all of these people were placed in my life for the exact purpose that they accomplished.
From this experience I continued to learn to see Christ in every person that I meet, no matter their outward appearance. These experiences have convicted me to avoid judgment and accept differences. With or without Faith, they showed me Christ through their goodness. From this experience I have a growing desire to boldly invest in others lives and show interest in their experiences. From these encounters I have developed an understanding of how not to judge others, searching for the good in everyone. Whatever path that I embark on after college I hope to take these lessons with me to build up the body of Christ.
God bless you and your family during this Christmas and Holiday season. I hope that you have enjoyed following my journey through Italy and beyond this semester! It has been such a pleasure to share this part of my journey with you. I'm excited to share the rest with you all!
Love and Prayers,