This quarter has brought me a lot of life changes, most prominently my increased sense of interconnectedness in community. Contrasting with my recent time in undergrad, seldom do I think of myself in the context of self. Now it is often myself in relation to the community.
This community may be that of my house, my clients, my coworkers, or even those sleepy folks I share a bus ride with in my morning commute.
How will my schedule affect those around me? What community am I prioritizing today in my choices?
I have always dreamt of moving to Los Angeles, and now that I’ve lived here for just over a month, I can confidently say that it’s nothing like I expected.
This experience has been tough. I have never been so emotionally and physically drained from all the things that happen week to week. Serve. Commute. House Meeting. Spiritual Practice. Commute. Eat. Shower. Serve. I have not loved every moment of this year, but I have grown significantly. Grown through the serving, the commuting, and the community building in ways I could have never imagined. For that growth I appreciate the experience and opportunity I have been given with the Episcopal Urban Intern Program and St. Joseph Center.
Part of my growth involves my realization that I am not meant to directly serve the homeless. This is not the path God chose for me to pursue, and if it weren’t for EUIP and SJC, I never would have known that. Don’t get me wrong- this discovery does not mean that I regret my decision to serve in EUIP at St. Joseph Center- it means I’m one step closer to finding my calling.
Pictures and music say it best.
When growing into your own person, you go through phases of figuring out who you are. What you want to look like, what clothes you wanna wear, the one pair of sneakers you keep no matter how old and beat up they are because of the memories they hold. Think back to 7th grade and who you were at the time. You’re probably cringing at the idea of what you thought was cool and thankful for puberty. That same process is true for those who consider themselves artist. There are times where your work, your process, and your inspiration changes. Photography has been my means of expression for a long time, and to be honest it’s a love hate relationship at times. Sometimes it’s the most amazing thing I could do, capturing moments and emotions, but sometimes it’s the most stressful thing and can bring me so much anxiety.
These are reflections from corps members and alumni of Jubilee's Urban Service Programs. They cover topics ranging from the sun, fun and friends in in Los Angeles to the uncensored experiences of serving vulnerable populations in our beautiful city. These are Voices of Service.