"When I came to university, it was so difficult to balance my school work, extracurriculars and trying to take care of myself that I decided my faith was just not important at the time," Christina Donato writes. Pixabay

Speaking Out: Forgetting my faith was a mistake

By  Christina Donato, Speaking Out
  • April 19, 2018

When I was younger, it wasn’t difficult for me to balance my faith with extra-curricular activities and family obligations. 

We immersed ourselves in our church community by joining the choir, volunteering at fundraisers and joining committees. There was never a question about if I could attend Mass that weekend or not. 

My ability to practise my faith became corrupted when it was time for me to move out and be on my own as a university student. Let me say this plain and simply: post-secondary is one the most difficult transitions in a young adult persons’ life. 

Having to go from the comfort of your family’s nest to being on your own and learning to balance everything by yourself for the first time is not easy. With all of the changes, it was easy to feel the need to put my faith on hold. 

I come from a family that believes in helping each other. I hadn’t had to do a lot on my own before. When I came to university, it was so difficult to balance my school work, extracurriculars and trying to take care of myself that I decided my faith was just not important at the time. 

Forgetting my faith was my mistake and it is a mistake that new post-secondary students should avoid making. Because I decided my religion wasn’t important at the time, I lost the ability to believe in something good and my moral compass was not as strong. 

In my first year, I started to question what was, and wasn’t, important in life. I started to question my religion, in general. The more my school priorities piled up, the more I pushed my faith under the rug. 

I only attended Mass whenever I went home to visit my family, but it wasn’t the same as before. My original sense of calling was no longer there so it felt like a chore to even give an hour of my day to God. 

My grandfather was one of the most faithful men I had ever met, attending Mass up until the day he couldn’t walk anymore. I was reminded of this devotion to God when I returned home. 

After that summer, I remembered to allow God into my university experience and my beliefs helped me cope through some of toughest tests and exams I had taken.

The point of my story is that it is OK to sometimes lose your way in your faith. Life is full of surprises and we are always facing new challenges. We just have to remind ourselves why we seek our faith in the first place. 

Whether our religion helps us cope with everyday life or gives us the belief we need not be scared to face stages of life, including death, we have to remember why it is here for us. 

God isn’t just in the church. He is in our spirit and all around us. Remembering that will help new students balance their faith while transitioning into adulthood. 

(Donati, 22, is a fourth-year English and sociology student at Western University in London, Ont.)

Comments (0)

There are no comments posted here yet

Leave your comments

  1. Posting comment as a guest. Sign up or login to your account.
Attachments (0 / 3)
Share Your Location

Please support The Catholic Register

Unlike many media companies, The Catholic Register has never charged readers for access to the news and information on our website. We want to keep our award-winning journalism as widely available as possible, which has become acutely important amid the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. But we need your help.

For more than 125 years, The Register has been a trusted source of faith-based journalism. By making even a small donation you help ensure our future as an important voice in the Catholic Church. If you support the mission of Catholic journalism, please donate today. Thank you.