Welcoming Home Road For Hope

Our students, your sons/daughters/loved ones, are doing very well out on the road journeying back to campus. Thank you to those parents who provided a meal or stopped by to visit and share snacks (always a morale booster!) Today they are in good spirits despite the weather and are anxiously approaching their final destination. Thank you for all the love and support you have given them throughout this journey. Last night they received their letters from home, which really helped them to look toward these final two days with excitement and anticipation.

Road For Hope returns to campusThe Road for Hope participants are due in to Saint Anselm College at the Main Entrance for 1 p.m. on Saturday. If you are able to come, please make arrangements to be here by 12:45 p.m. We will have some cookies and water, as well as some t-shirts “Someone I love walked the Road for Hope” – for sale for $15. We ask you not to park along the main entrance but to proceed onto campus to the parking lot behind the Coffee Shop. Upon their arrival we will take several pictures and then send them on their way to shower (much needed), rest, and spend time with you.

Please note there is a Wedding in the Abbey Church at 3 p.m. on Saturday. We are asking folks to clear the front lawn and Church area by 2 p.m. in order to respect the scheduled wedding – the couple and their guests!

Please contact me if you have any questions.

See you on Saturday!

Best,
Sue

Road For Hope Returns To The Hilltop Saturday!

One foot in front of the other, one step at a time, over 100 (of 130) miles walked, over $15,000 fundraised, countless lives touched by the Road For Hope. Please join us in welcoming them home!

Our 32 Road for Hope walkers will return to campus Saturday August 29 between 2/2:30 p.m. at the main entrance of the college. Please join us in cheering them on and celebrating their tremendous accomplishment!

Road For Hope returns to campusOn behalf of the walkers and the entire Campus Ministry staff; I thank you in advance for your continued prayers and support.

100 Miles Complete!

The Road for Hope walkers have made it to New Hampshire, enjoyed their time at Saint Charles Children's Home in Rochester, N.H. – learning about this charities mission and work.  They also enjoyed the second (and last) shower of the week. Now, Day six is complete, 100 miles are in the books and the group only has 30 more to go! But its not really about the distance, its about the journey. Our group of 33 have taken on a pilgrimage, a journey of hope. Along this journey they have encountered many challenges, discovered countless insights, and have grown both individually and collectively. In this busy world of constant noise, these participants encountered the beauty of nature, the peace of silence, the comfort of true companionship, and the commitment of service. This journey has tested them physically, pushed them emotionally, required of them true self-sacrifice, and embraced them spiritually. Each participant will return to campus with different lessons learned, but all will be richer for the experience.

Road For Hope 2015On Thursday, two of our leaders volunteered while off the road at Upreach Theraputic Riding Center, one of our charities. They were able to return to the group and share the richness of their experience and open the groups eyes to the important work of this charity. Today, the walkers also heard from RAYs another charity, who provided the group with lunch and shared with them the mission and work of their organization. Today, was also the infamous "rollercoaster road" day with its own heartbreak hill. Together both on and off the road these participants took on the challenge of this pilgrimage and accomplished today's goal. After a successful day, with cooler weather and no threat of rain; the group celebrated with games and laughter. Now, sound asleep and grateful for the hospitality of St. Joseph's Parish in Northwood, N.H. Friday they travel to Candia, N.H. and then home to the hilltop on Saturday. It's hard to believe they are just 30 miles away!

Please continue to keep the Road for Hope in your prayers!

Each morning they pray:

The Pilgrimage Prayer

Be for us,
a companion on our journey
the guide on our intersections
the strengthening during fatigue
the fortress in danger
the resource on our itinerary
the shadow in our heat
the light in our darkness
the consolation during dejection
and the power of our intention
so that we under your guidance, safely and unhurt, may reach the end of our pilgrimage,
and strengthened with gratitude and power, secure and filled with happiness,
may return home to proclaim the Good News of the Gospel. We ask this through Christ our Lord, Amen.

Wednesday, August 26th: St. Charles Children's home

  • Mission: The St. Charles Children's Home provides a nurturing environment for homeless, abused, or deserted children in the greater Rochester area.
  • Reflection: “If a child is to keep his inborn sense of wonder, he needs to companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement and mystery of the world we live in.” (Rachel Carson) “Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul – and sings the tunes without the words – and never stops at all.” (Emily Dickinson)

Thursday, August 27th: Rochester Recreation Arena and Youth Services

  • Mission: To provide an adult companion for Rochester youth in need of extra support, friendship, mentoring and recreation. Our goal is to make a difference one child at a time.

On The Road: Day Two, Three, and Four…

Today our walkers managed to navigate the weather and arrived safely at the Roy's. Here they will enjoy the generous hospitality of an Anselmian family (their son Kevin is an alumnus and walked the RFH). Abbot Matthew will celebrate Mass with the group, and they will be dry for the night.

A big THANK YOU to Shaw's Supermarket who generously allowed our walkers to use the bathroom and entry way to take shelter from the rain for a long lunch break.

Road for Hope 2015Monday I travel up to Maine, to be with the Road for Hope. Please stay tuned to the tweets (in the side bar to the right of this page) which will keep you updated on what's happening on the road. Below are the charities and reflections for Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. I will update the blog on Wednesday with a mid-week check-in!

Sunday, August 23rd: Good Shepherd Food Bank

  • Mission: The mission of Good Shepard Food Bank is to provide food for those at risk of hunger by soliciting surplus to food and distributing it to non-profit programs throughout Maine.
  • Reflection: “Hope, is the little voice in your head that whispers ‘maybe’ when it seems the entire world is shouting ‘no’.” (Unknown)

Monday, August 24th: Today's charity – Kids Café

  • Mission:  Kid's Café is a program of the Salvation Army which serves evening meals to inner city children four nights a week. Kids Café encourages tolerance and respect for all people.
  • Reflection: "They are like the angles, they are God's Children" (Luke 20: 36). "And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love." (1Corinthians 13:13)

Tuesday, August 25th:  Today's charity – Upreach

  • Mission: Upreach Therapeutic Riding Center is an educational, nonprofit program dedicated to improving the physical, emotional, and psychological development of challenged children and adults through horseback riding.
  • Reflection: "I will be generous with my love today.  I will sprinkle compliments and uplifting words everywhere I go. I will do this knowing that my words are like seeds and when they fall on fertile soil, a reflection of those seeds will grow into something greater." (Steve Maraboli) "Remember, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and a good thing never dies." (Stephen King)

Wednesday, August 26th:  Charity – York County Shelter Program

  • Mission:  We are committed to ending homelessness and assisting people to reach their fullest potential by providing access to various levels of housing, personal growth opportunities and community resources.  We embrace diversity and economic security for all.
  • Reflection: "When you put effort in, it will always return. Don't give up." (Positive Energy Plus) "Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing the dawn will come. You wait and watch and work. You don't give up." (Anne Lammot)

Day One: The Walk Begins

Early this morning, the seventeenth Road for Hope stepped off from Lewiston, beginning an eight-day, 130 mile journey back to campus. As I write this post the group is at their first break of the walk. Spirits are high, weather is good – cloudy and humid but manageable!

Road for Hope 2015As the Road for Hope walkers begin their journey we pray,

The Pilgrimage Prayer:

Be for us,
a companion on our journey
the guide on our intersections
the strengthening during fatigue
the fortress in danger
the resource on our itinerary
the shadow in our heat
the light in our darkness
the consolation during dejection
and the power of our intention so that we under your guidance, safely and unhurt, may reach the end of our pilgrimage,
 and strengthened with gratitude and power, secure and filled with happiness,
may return home to proclaim the Good News of the Gospel. We ask this through Christ our Lord, Amen.

The group was visited last night by representative from one of our charities – Community Concepts.

The goal of this program is to assist families in becoming more self-sufficient by giving them an opportunity to make a fresh start with affordable housing.

Day One is a journey from Lewiston, Maine to Gray, Maine

Today the walkers walk for Community Concepts and Birthline (who will visit the group today). Birthline is a social service program that provides support to women experiencing untimely pregnancies in ways that affirm the dignity and sanctity of human life in all dimensions.

The group reflected on the following passages as they hit the road early this morning:

"God created man in his image; in the divine image he created him; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:27)

Hope is important because it can make the present moment less difficult to bear. If we believe that tomorrow will be better, we can bear a hardship today.”

-Thich Nhat Hanh

Thank you for your continued prayers!

Journey with the Road for Hope

We invite you to join us on our journey through prayer. As we take our pilgrimage from Lewiston, Maine to Saint Anselm College, we do so on behalf of nine worthy charities. In a time when most of us are speeding through life, the Road for Hope speaks to the value and joy of a slow walk. It is in this spirit that the students and staff of Saint Anselm College, and many others along the way, unite to walk a Road for Hope.

2015 Road for Hope walkersThanks to many of you we have raised over $15,000 and along the road we will be meeting up with each of these charities to learn more about the tremendous services they provide day in and day out. Our leaders will volunteer while on the road at some of our sites to bring home the message of this walk on behalf of others.

Each day we select a charity or two to reflect on throughout our walk, to remind us why we embarked on this journey, to remind us that many of those we share the road of life with travel difficult journeys every day.

Please join us on our journey by praying for the charity of the day and for us as we continue our pilgrimage on behalf of others.

Tonight the 32 Road for Hope walkers and leaders along with Andy Fellows, Assistant Campus Minister and Abbot Matthew, O.S.B. Campus Minister arrived at Sts. Peter and Paul Basilica just before 6 p.m.

The group has settled down for dinner and a fun evening of prep and an early night to sleep.  They will be up at 6 a.m. to prep for day one!

Road For Hope Returns To The Hilltop Sunday!

One foot in front of the other, one step at a time, over 115 (of 130) miles walked, over $19,000 raised for charity, countless lives touched by the Road for Hope! Please join us in welcoming them home! [Read more…]

Day One Complete

A beautiful first day of Road for Hope 2014!  An excited group of 42 left the Bascilica of Sts. Peter and Paul early this morning enroute to their first overnight at St. Gregory's Catholic Church in Gray, ME.  Along the way they sang songs, had dance parties, shared stories with their walking partner, rested at their lunch spot at the First Congregational Church in New Gloucester, ME, and reflected on their first charity Upreach. Upreach Therapeutic Riding Center is an educational, nonprofit program dedicated to improving the physical, emotional, and psychological development of challenged children and adults through horseback riding.  Upon approaching a hill before lunch the group was treated to some freeze pops from a man and his son.  The perfect act of kindness to motivate the group!

Road for Hope departs Lewiston

Upon arriving at their overnight destination they were greeted by thier second charity Birthline, Fr. Bernard Disco, O.S.B. who presided over Mass for the group and an excited group of Road for Hope Alumni who prepared dinner and provided encouragement, stories, and laughter.  They had time for a swim and blister care before settling down for the night.  Truly a successful Day One.  A good night rest and the group begins Day Two heading to The Roy's, an extraordinarily generous family that has supported our Road for Hopers since their son Kevin '07 participated.

115 miles down, 15 To Go! Show Your Support Saturday

One foot in front of the other, one step at a time, over 115 (of 130) miles walked, over $18,000 raised, countless lives touched by the Road For Hope. Please join us in welcoming them home! Our 35 Road for Hope walkers will return to campus Saturday August 31 at 1:30 p.m. at the main entrance of the college.

Please join us cheering them on and celebrating their tremendous accomplishment!

We ask for your prayers for these participants, for the physical nature of the walk that has left them blistered and bandaged, for the communities for which they have served through raising over $18,000 for 10 charities in Maine and New Hampshire, and for their hearts that have changed over these 130 miles on pilgrimage.

We ask for your support of these participants. Many times participants come back from these trips overwhelmed by their experience. Please ask them about their week on the road!

On behalf of the walkers and the entire Campus Ministry staff; I thank you in advance for your continued prayers and support.

Journey with the Road for Hope

We invite you to join us on our journey through prayer. As we take our pilgrimage from Lewiston, Maine to Saint Anselm College we do so on behalf of 10 worthy charities. Thanks to many of you we have raised over $18,000 and along the road we will be meeting up with each of these charities to learn more about the tremendous services they provide day in and day out. Our leaders will volunteer while on the road at some of our sites to bring home the message of this walk on behalf of others.

Each day we select a charity or two to reflect on throughout our walk, to remind us why we embarked on this journey, to remind us that many of those we share the road of life with travel difficult journeys every day.

Please join us on our journey by praying for the charity of the day and for us as we continue our pilgrimage on behalf of others.

Friday we heard from UpReach Therapeutic Riding Center, an educational nonprofit program dedicated to improving the physical, emotional, and psychological development of challenged children and adults through horseback riding.  We dedicated our beginning to there work.

Saturday's charity is Birthline of Portland, Maine. Birthline is a social service program that provides support to women experiencing untimely pregnancies in ways that affirm the dignity and sanctity of human life in all dimensions.

Sunday's charity is Good Shepherd Food Bank, which provides food for those at risk of hunder by soliciting surplus food and distributing it to non-profit programs throughout Maine.

Monday's charity is Community Concepts, the goal of this program is to assist families in becoming more self-sufficient by giving them an opportunity to make a fresh start with affordable housing.  Leaders Eric and Morgan will be visiting this charity and getting a tour of the projects they are currently working on.  We look forward to hearing more about this wonderful charity.

Tuesday's charity are 1)the Parent Resource Center which assists parents in developing healthier parenting skills and knowledge, stressing positive thinking and skills to build up self image and esteem; and 2) Our newest charity just added this year York County Shelter Program which offers food and shelter for those who are homeless in York County and provide the largest amount of support in York County to low income families, elderly, and underemployeed individuals.

Wednesday's charity is St. Charles Children's Home which provides a nurturing environment for homeless, abused, or deserted children in the greater Rochester area.

Please join us in prayer as we dedicate each day to them!