My Fifth Year in Massachusetts

by a.fallesgon / 6. May 2012 09:05

“Have faith and God will be with you.” 

I remember when Pat said this quote to us during our community retreat in February. It has resonated with me because faith was something that I had taken for granted in the past. This quote exemplifies my current experience as an AV serving in Lawrence. A year ago, if you asked me how I felt about spending my volunteer year in Lawrence, I would have told you how devastated and upset I was. At the time, I felt I already spent enough time in Massachusetts and was in dire need of a new change of scenery. I can tell you now that it was honestly the best decision made for me because I have a great community and an incredible service site. 

I am currently working at St. Augustine School in Andover, MA. It is a parochial school starting from nursery all the way to 8th grade. As the school’s Student Advancement Coordinator, my primary responsibilities include assisting the third grade classes during reading and math, working at Extended Day, the after school program, and acting as a substitute when needed. I have subbed every grade and all the specials: art, music, and gym. Every day is usually different, and I love it because I have the opportunity to expose myself to all the grades. However, kindergarten is definitely my favorite grade. I spend the most time down there because the kindergartners are adorable and they always brighten up my day. The teachers and their aides are so wonderful because they have become my closest friends and I have become their “adopted daughter.” At St. Augustine, I have the pleasure of working at a school that embodies this family-oriented community. All the faculty and staff have been so kind and welcoming during the course of my year. It makes me sad to think that my time is almost over. 

The most challenging part of my year was trying to rebuild and strengthen my faith. With the help of my community, as well as my experiences at St. Augustine, I recognize a progression in my spirituality. My community has taught me and challenged me to open myself up more with them and my faith. When we started the program, my relationship with God or faith was insecure. However, each of my community members were established and felt confident about their faith. Their positive influence has inspired me to become vulnerable and willing to mend my spirituality. My experience at my service site has allowed me to see God’s presence through the students and faculty at St. Augustine. My spirituality has grown significantly and I have learned to have faith in God because he is always with me.

Alissa Fallesgon

Lawrence, MA 2011-2012

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Domestics 2011-2012

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