The Journey Begins

Welcome, friends! I am thrilled you are here to walk with me on this journey as a Young Adult Volunteer!

Paul Revere statue at the Boston Common.
Photo from ibos.org

This blog is to document my upcoming year serving as a Young Adult Volunteer (YAV) with the Presbyterian Church (USA). After a long discernment process filled with many conversations, prayers, and much introspection I’ve accepted the call to service in Boston, Massachusetts. This placement in Boston is very special to me, as the focus of this site is food justice. As a Boston Food Justice YAV (BFJYAV), I’ll be serving at two non-profit organizations each focused on addressing challenges of food insecurity and food justice.

The YAV program is unique in that it has several core tenets that are particularly poignant and are ultimately the reason I felt compelled to answer the call to service with the PC (USA). These tenets embody the essence of Christianity and the ministry of Jesus Christ — they are central to understanding the mission of the YAV program.

The 5 core tenets of the program include:

Intentional Christian Community

Simple Living

Cross-Cultural Mission

Leadership Development through Faith in Action

Vocational Discernment

I will elaborate on each of these values in further reflections as they are essential to the experience of the YAV year. I recognize that it is my calling and responsibility to strive to embody each of these throughout the year.

Tomorrow begins the journey of service with a week of orientation at Stony Point Conference Center in Stony Point, New York. After this week of orientation, I’ll transition to Boston with three other BFJYAVs who I’ll be serving alongside and living in fellowship with for the duration of the year. We will grow and be challenged together in intentional Christian community while choosing to live simply as we seek God’s voice during our time of service.

As this year begins, I’m going in with the intentions of seeking spiritual, emotional, and intellectual transformation…easy, right? I realize these are lofty aspirations and am fully aware that expectations often fall short of reality. That being said, my main goal for this year is to strive to be truly present in each moment and immerse myself in the unique opportunity that lies before me. As I proceed into this unknown but exciting journey, my mantra that I hope will keep me thoughtful and challenged is, “seek and embrace discomfort”. Although I am unsure of the experiences, conversations, people and challenges that I will encounter, I am sure that being open to all of these things will help me mold my perspective and discern my path forward.

After an empowering commissioning service this morning at my home church, Pickens Presbyterian Church (Pickens, South Carolina), and many prayers and loving words of encouragement, I can confidently say (for the first time) that I am ready to begin this journey of service and community-seeking.

It is important to me to stay connected with my expanding community throughout this journey, so I invite you to continue to follow and walk with me throughout this exploration with Christ!

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