Mount student Katie Hogg of Rockaway Park, N.Y. (left) and Gina Evers, director of the Writing Center and the college’s First-Year Experience Program, discuss their recent pilgrimage to Fanjeaux, France.
Mount Saint Mary College community members shared their summer pilgrimage experience in southern France during The Dominican Charism and the Fanjeaux Experience presentation on campus on Tuesday, October 4.
This past June, students Katie Hogg of Rockaway Park, N.Y. and Christopher Christiano of Waterbury, Conn., Mount campus Chaplain Fr. Greg Fluet, and Gina Evers, campus Writing Center director traveled to Fanjeaux, France, to learn more about the life of St. Dominic and how it relates to the four Dominican pillars of spirituality, study, community and service.
“When you’re going somewhere as a tourist, your purpose is to go and consume the destination; but when one goes as a pilgrim, it’s more about the journey, experience, and risk taking,” said Evers.
During the trip, they visited historical and spiritual landmarks like Dominican monasteries, learned about the rich history of the city, understood the importance of being a pilgrim, completed coursework and seminars related to the material, and described the spiritual and personal gifts they brought home with them.
“I came home with just a greater appreciation for the human experience and took affirmation and strength from that, that other people have lived and survived, and my experience is just one of many,” added Evers.
The Mount group’s pilgrimage shed light on their own experiences, life lessons, and intangible gifts they now hold dear to themselves, and their hearts.
St. Dominic made innumerable contributions to Christianity more than 800 years ago, all while living a simple, joyful life. About seven centuries later, the Dominican Sisters founded Mount Saint Mary College.
The talk was part of the college’s annual Founders Week, which honors the legacy of St. Dominic de Guzman and the Dominican Sisters whose vision guided the creation of the college. The college’s Catholic and Dominican Institute has sponsored the Founders Week celebration at the college every year for more than a decade.