University Ministry is offering students the opportunity to rediscover themselves through faith and community in a retreat.
Kairos is a student-led retreat that invites students to take time out of their usual routine in order to take a closer look at who they are to examine the important relationships in life. It’s scheduled to take place Feb. 3-5, 2012, in Frankfort, south of Chicago.
Kairos is a Greek word for “time.” Students are encouraged to disconnect from electronics and kronos, or counted time, and instead, reflect on kairos, which is God’s time or the appointed time.
“People really get to know each other and people can build a stronger community,” Ann Hillman, director of Retreats and Community Outreach for University Ministry, said.
For students, it is meant to be a meaningful weekend filled with inspiration and ideas to bring back to campus and one’s everyday life. What makes Kairos unique is its focus on the self, your community and God through self-reflection and collaboration with others of the retreat community.
Kairos involves student leaders, carefully chosen by University Ministry, to lead discussions and drive the retreat’s community aspect. The student leaders have attended past Kairos retreats and know what it takes to create a meaningful weekend.
Sophomore Anthony Pisano will be a student leader for this year’s Kairos retreat. After a positive experience at last year’s retreat, Pisano said he wanted to become a leader. “It’s a rewarding program that allows students to discover their true potential,” Pisano said.
The retreat may create student leaders who strive to carry out the department’s mission and are committed to getting to know people across campus from different backgrounds and faiths, Hillman said.
“I liked the deep spiritual connections I made with God and myself on the retreat last year,” Cody Koepke, another Kairos student leader this year, said. “I want to give other people the opportunity to feel that same connection.”
The idea to bring the Catholic retreat model to Dominican was introduced in 2009, when a group of students who participated in Kairos retreats at their Catholic high schools believed it would be a good program for the university. The first retreat at Dominican was held in the spring of 2010.
Dominican stresses the importance of living a life in pursuit of love, truth and service to others. University Ministry wants students, regardless of their faith, to break away from the stresses of campus life and analyze who they are and what they believe.
Registration to participate on the Kairos retreat began Nov. 28. Students can pick up an application from University Ministry on the second floor of Lewis.
– Jackie Glosniak, Contributing Writer