As we approach Thanksgiving, I invite us to share with each other…who we are thankful for? Last week, I began with my older brother. This week, I would like to share about Fr. Carville, who may not to this day understand the impact he had on my life.
When I was 17 and a senior in high school, I received a letter from Fr. Carville in the mail inviting me to attend the Catholic Leadership Institute (CLI) at Notre Dame University, sponsored by the Diocese of Baton Rouge. The letter included the logistics of the week and then simply said, “Becky, I would like to invite you to apply to attend.” So, I did apply, and I several months later went on CLI just a few weeks after my graduation from high school.
As we look backwards on our lives, we can name major events that were turning points in our lives. Events that transformed us in a way that we still understand the impact. CLI was one of these events for me. Fr. Carville’s invitation to attend changed my life.
What was so big about CLI for me? During junior and senior year of high school, I began to explore and ask questions about my faith. The catalysts for these explorations were confirmation preparation and my religion classes my junior and senior year (and my teachers). By the time CLI came around, I was ready to own my faith. CLI opened the door for me to understanding a community of faith. It was there on that week at age 17 that I met incredible adult role models, who are now close friends, (you will hear more about them later), and I also witnessed my peers who led authentic lives of faith.
It was on that week at CLI that something deep within me opened up, which I can name now as the awareness of God, fully active in my life.
This all began with a simple invitation. The fruits of Fr. Carville’s invitation are still part of my life today. So, Fr. Carville, while I do not get to see you any more since we are in two different cities…thank you for that invitation to participate so many years ago!
Who in your life are you thankful for? Please share with us in the comment section or via facebook!