New Guest Post Series: This, is me

This will be part of a “This, is me series” where people can share who they are through a wholly Catholic lens.

I asked my Goddaughter L, to be the first. She will share her perspective on life as she experiences it with us. I hope you enjoy her as much as I do. Personally, I am proud of her in that she is making the time and sharing her feelings in such an open and honest way.

She will make an appearance every so often as her school calendar and responsibilities permit. I’ve made it easy to follow her writing as she has her own subcategory, L, under “Guest Posts”.

Please give her a warm welcome.

*     *     *

Hey Guys,Leah

I’m L.

I am Cristina’s new, first and only Godchild. She asked me to say a few words to you and introduce myself. I will visit every so often and share my thoughts as a teenaged Catholic living in a secular world. I’m 18 years old (tomorrow, go figure!) with a wonderfully Catholic family behind me.  My Dad is amazing, you all know my beautiful mother, S, and the greatest person in the world, my 14 year old sister. To share a deep sisterly inside joke, we can call her JSmudge.

I will be starting my senior year at a great Catholic high school in the center of a not-so-great city, but our school family of about 900 kids does well in our bubble of safety.  I’m pushing myself this year with all Honors and two AP classes. Oh man, Honors and AP? What am I thinking? Oh yeah, college next year. I can’t believe I’m currently filling out applications. My choices are the Catholic University of America (top choice), Franciscan University of Steubenville, and DeSales University. I’m going to major in Psychology and do Air Force ROTC. I would love to be a military psychologist, God willing, but really I just want to help people using the gifts God blessed me with.

I love horses will all my heart.  I take the sport very seriously, and I’m a pretty disciplined athlete.  I have been riding competitively for almost 14 years. I’ve kicked butt since I started showing at five, if I do say so myself – and I do! *insert winky face here*. Sadly, I don’t own my own horse; the price tag of the equestrian world would make your eyes pop out of your head. However, I have been blessed to be able to train at an incredible farm for the past 10 years.  My hysterically funny trainer has become a big sister to me, and because of these blessings, I am able to ride, train, and work with many horses. But of course I have my favorite.

Meet PRR Dark Sky Eagle, or Sky, as we call him. He is an 18 year old appaloosa that I began working with 10 years ago. I’m his most advanced and favorite rider, and he is my favorite boy; the love of my life.

Sky

I have loved taking pictures for as long as I can remember, and it became my passion about five years ago. Once I got a Nikon D5000 my entire world changed in front of me. I started seeing beauty through the lens of my camera. My photography became more than just pictures on a screen; they became my diary, each one holding incredible emotion. My passion evolved into showing others the beautiful world that God shows me, through the images I am privileged to capture with the talent bestowed so lovingly upon me. The Lord has spoken to me through it.

This is one of my favorites.
This is one of my favorites.

Last but not least, the most important part of me is my faith. I’ve been raised in a loving Catholic household, and have only attended Catholic schools. I joined the parish’s youth group the second I was allowed. But I don’t feel that listing these attributes says much about who I am as a teenage Catholic.

Theology classes never did much for me, (I’m that kind of Catholic who always wants to learn more) and because of the amazing youth group (IHS) that teaches me so many things, regular school classes always seem subpar and honestly not as interesting as everything else.

To really know me you have to know that my faith is quite private. During IHS meetings I sit quietly and absorb, I pray privately, and I try to embody Saint Francis of Assisi’s “Preach the gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words.” This is just how I am, but I’ve been told that it’s okay (sometimes I doubt that I’m doing this Catholic thing right). Luckily, I have been beyond blessed with amazing people and experiences that have really shaped who I am as a young Catholic in this unforgivingly, secular world. I cannot wait to share all of who I am with you.

I hope I did an okay job introducing myself to you and letting you into my world. This, is me.

Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam,

L

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11 thoughts on “New Guest Post Series: This, is me

  1. What a beautiful introduction! Your parents (and Godmother!) must be so proud of you. You are a shining example of our Catholic youth today. I can’t wait to share your profile with my daughter, Mary, who is 9 years old. We all need good peer models and youth to look up to. She’s a horse-lover too, but her passion is ballet. Blessings to you this school year…good luck with those college applications.

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  2. So glad to meet you! You are an amazing young lady! I love how you live your Catholic faith. And your photograph is stunning. I love “My passion evolved into showing others the beautiful world that God shows me…” What a gift! Thank you for introducing yourself to us….and lots of prayers for your upcoming decisions about your life. My son is a senior at Franciscan University (would have graduated in May but became ill his last semester) and I have been and continue to be astounded by that place. You must at least visit and you will feel the intense presence of Holy Spirit on that campus. Their study abroad program in Gaming, Austria is incredible. My son said it was the highlight of his life. My daughters (12 & 15) both ride as well and have for the past 6 years. If you do attend Franciscan you are welcome to come ride anytime!!! God Bless you and your wonderful and beautiful Godmother!

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    1. Thank you so much 🙂 I love hearing stories about Franciscan students, I have lots of good friends there. I have attended four of the Steubenville Main Campus Conferences, participated in LEAD on campus, stayed overnight with a friend for a college tour, and will hopefully be heading back up there soon. I just cant stay away! 🙂 I hope your girls keep on riding! God Bless you and your family. 🙂

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  3. Welcome, Leah. It is so good to hear a new perspective. I have been working with teen for the last fifteen years. I never tire learning to view the world through their eyes: much better! Good luck with school and your spiritual journey.

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    1. Thanks! It sort of became a series as I began writing the introduction for her. I thought, it would be great to share snapshots of people. Meeting them ‘where they’re at’ to share their perspective. We’re a colorful kind, Catholics. Wanna explore what that looks like and share of course.

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