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Becoming human: a jv’s reflection on life at l’arche

How does one slow down while living in a culture that places such high value on personal accomplishment? In their post on L’Arche Portland’s blog, Jesuit Volunteer Jacqueline Mosher (Gresham, OR ’17-18) and Core Member Joni Smith offer authentic relationship as the answer. Here’s a glimpse.

“My first few weeks at L’Arche were really challenging. After leaving the ‘doing-oriented’ culture that I had been living in since birth, but that especially took a toll on me in college, I felt incredibly uncomfortable with what I experienced as overwhelming slowness, silence, and stillness in the L’Arche homes. It almost felt like I set foot on another planet. I didn’t know how to define myself without having the cushion of an enormous list of items to accomplish, tests and papers to ace.

Slowly but surely, I have felt myself open up to this counter-cultural way of being and experiencing life.”

Read Jacqueline and Joni’s full reflection on L’Arche Portland’s blog.

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Zayna Abusada

(She/her/hers)
JVC Northwest Recruiter

Zayna Abusada (Ashland, MT ’17-18, Anchorage, AK ’18-19) was most recently a JV in south-central Alaska serving with immigrant and refugee English-Language learners as the Academy for Citizenship and Civics Support Specialist with the Alaska Literacy Program (ALP) in Anchorage. Zayna first served with Indigenous students on the Northern Cheyenne and Crow Reservations. Originally from Iowa City, Iowa, Zayna went on to earn her undergraduate degree in History and Theological Studies with a minor in Middle Eastern Studies at Saint Louis University.