23 November 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Dear Villagers,

What a blast we had last night with the ultimate Man versus Food Challenge! Together, we consumed copious amounts of Grass-flavored Jello, Squid (beefless) jerky, Lychee Gelatin Mounds, and of course- the iconic Durian Fruit from southeast Asia. As everyone discerned from the beginning, it was going to be a gross food challenge, and it was!

In addition to eating some sticky things, we talked about some pretty sticky things- Self-Harm, Alcohol Abuse, and Drug Abuse. We gave some practical tips to understand and support a friend in crisis. Please don't promise total confidentiality to a friend before you know what they're dealing with, it really is not in their best interest! To be a true friend, promise to keep total confidentiality except for cases where they are at risk of harming themselves or others. You are not a professional counselor, and it may be in their best interest to get help from a trained professional. See the bottom for a list of Resources to Help in Crises.

Self-Harm, Alcohol Abuse, and Drug Abuse are often used as an outlet to deal with a deeper emotional problem. Using these as an outlet in teen years can become addictive, creating an unhealthy behavior pattern that’s really hard to break! Never judge a friend who is dealing with these things, but encourage them that there are better outlets for the stress they're feeling. When God is faced with the 99 sheep who are fine and the 1 sheep who is lost, He will always go after the one lost sheep. Even though these behaviors can be sinful, know that God's love is passionate and forgiving. God's mercy is waiting for each of us in the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

---Registration forms for The Village Fall Retreat (12/11-12/13) are online at findthevillage.com. Get yours in by the Early Bird Registration Deadline- December 2nd, and you could win 5 lbs of Trolli sour gummy worms!

---Your Question of the Week: "Jason Evert really made me think…How do you say no when you’ve already said yes before?"

You are in my prayers,

The Village News

Resources to Help in Crises:
Crisis Pregnancies 24-hour Hotline: 1-800-57WOMAN
Ozone House 24-hour Crisis Hotline: (734) 662-2222
National Addiction Assistance Helpline: 1-800-559-9503
Alcoholics Anonymous-Alateen: 1 (888) 4AL-ANON
Christian Teen Line: 1-800-394-HOPE [Mon-Sun 6pm-5am]
Contact Youth Minister Beth Spizarny at (734) 545-0827
Find a local Therapist at psychologytoday.com

This Thursday: No Dead Theologians Society

Through the Saints of yesterday, the Dead Theologians Society, or DTS, inspires the youth of today to become the saints of tomorrow! Come on out and join us next Thursday from 6:30-8pm when we'll be discussing St Francis Xavier.

This Sunday, 11/29: No Village Meeting
Enjoy your Thanksgiving! Check in with us next next Sunday 12/6 for "St John Vianney & the Year of the Priest!"

Fall Retreat 12/11-12/13: Overview & Early Bird Deadline
Okay, the votes are in, and our longsleeve Fall Retreat t-shirts are going to be black with green and blue text! Thank you for your votes.Check out the RSVP and Guest List for Fall Retreat by visiting 'The Village @ St Thomas' on Facebook. Retreats are unique opportunities to take friendships to the next level through explosive games, incredible speakers, small group sharing opportunities, and copious amounts of food. Village Retreatants escape from the hectic schedule of everyday life to be welcomed into the rich prayer life of the Church with Morning Prayer and Night Prayer, in addition to Holy Mass. Together we will encounter Jesus in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and be blessed by God’s Real Presence in Eucharistic Adoration. Register by Wednesday, December 2nd and you will be automatically entered into our early bird prize giveaway, nearly 5 pounds of Trolli Sour Gummy Worms!

Your Question of the Week: "Jason Evert really made me think…How do you say no when you’ve already said yes before?"

Dating in high school is so hard! Men and women are not fully developed, and insecurities on all sides can easily lead a couple to use one another rather than truly love one another. Know that you are not alone in trying to figure out how to say no when you’ve already said yes before. Typically what happens in most dating relationships gone bad is this: the boy pressures the girl to go further physically (for his own physical pleasure, or maybe because he thinks this is what he is supposed to do), the girl agrees to go further (so that she feels loved even if it’s just for a moment, or because she thinks this is what she is supposed to do). Friends, this is not real love! This is the worldly counterfeit love- in which men and women simply use one another to feel good without experiencing the meaningful depths of real love that loves the other for his or her own sake and not because of what the other can give.

Jesus was always really loving and forgiving towards men and women who had fallen into some unhealthy dating pattern. Think of the woman at the well who had been with many men, and Jesus looked on her with loving compassion and opened up for her the truth that God alone could quench her thirst for love! Remember how Jesus defended and forgave the woman caught in adultery when the crowd threw her at his feet? Know that if there is any sense of shame or fear of God seeing you differently- know that God waits for all of us in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, to embrace us in His forgiving love and give us a clean fresh start.

Okay, now on to your question!! The easiest way to say no when you’ve already said yes before- is to avoid the “near occasion of sin” by avoiding the circumstances in which you are likely to be tempted altogether. For example, in high school my friends would get together at someone’s house to “watch movies” which actually meant they were going to have a makeout session with their significant others. SO in this case, avoiding the movie night altogether is the easiest way to say no!!

Other ways to avoid temptation: 1. Ask some legit Christian friends to pray for you, to help you make good decisions. 2. Develop more friendships with those who are rejecting the empty worldly counterfeit of love. Having friends who are like-minded can give you more healthy outlets for fun social hangouts. 3. Tell anyone who pressures you to say yes that you are worth waiting for! Remember Jason’s line- love waits to give but lust can’t wait to take. If you are truly loved, they will wait to show you their love in a physical way. If they keep pressuring you, END IT. (A good friend of mine is on to Man #3 in her adult life- she’s walked away from 2 who said they would wait but still pressured her not to. Be strong! You are worth it!)

Here are a couple other ways to rebuild a Christian understanding of dating. Spend some time thinking about what physical affection means- for starters, affection is intended to be an outward sign of an inward reality. Secondly, make a list of physical boundaries that you would want to use in a dating relationship that would be pleasing to God. This way when the next situation comes along, you’re prepared!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

thuc, can we trade links?