Tuesday evening, April 27, I had the opportunity to attend a mini-retreat focused on Sr. Thea Bowman and her songs, service, and struggles. The event was co-sponsored by Campus Ministry and Falvey and was open to all students, staff, and faculty. Presenters the Rev. Naomi Washington-Leapheart and Michelle Sherman guided us through Sister Thea’s Bowman’s story, introducing me to her life and story for the first time.
Sister Thea traveled around the country bringing people together in gatherings that combined singing, gospel preaching, prayer, and storytelling. She worked to break down racial and cultural barriers within the Catholic church and in general promoted a greater understanding of different races and cultures.
The evening was the perfect way to get away from the stresses of finals and focus on something bigger than ourselves. We started by listening to “Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child” by Sister Thea then talked about her service and struggles during her life. Throughout the program, we had opportunities to reflect and journal. To conclude, we shared our thoughts and takeaways from the retreat. Personally, it helped me reflect on the semester, the challenges, the joys, and how I have and can continue to serve through the struggles.
To learn more about Sister Thea check out the following books and resources.
Books in Falvey’s Collection:
- Thea Bowman: Faithful and Free by Maurice J. Nutt
- Thea’s Song: The Life of Thea Bowman by Charlene Smith
Stay tuned for more retreats from Campus Ministry and potentially even more Sr. Thea Bowman events!
Jenna Newman is a graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a graduate student in the Communication Department.
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