Everything Changed

by Taylor Hyatt

Nearly five years ago, Erica Stevens began the Religious Studies and Sociology program at St. Mary’s University in Halifax. Although she practiced her Catholic faith in high school, it remained an unimportant aspect of her life. Erica lived with what she now calls a ‘secular mindset’. She knew about Jesus in a general sense but it never went deeper than that.  She recalls, “I had faith but…I did my own thing and others did theirs.”

When Erica moved to Halifax for university she needed to find a new group of friends. She drifted away from the Church in her search for community, became involved with the wrong crowd, and got into the partying scene. Although Erica enjoyed her new friends, these experiences always left her feeling unsatisfied. She knew there had to be more.

In the second semester of her first year, Erica was invited to fill out a CCO survey. This simple moment would change her life forever. She would soon begin taking faith studies. CCO staff helped Erica to experience Christ, and introduced her to the idea that He wants a personal relationship with her. Through the Discovery faith study, Erica was able to encounter God’s love personally for the first time.

“That was when everything changed,” she says. Her faith was no longer simply an aspect of her life that was swept under the rug. Jesus became real and active in her life. CCO gave her the tools, opportunities, and friends to help her in her faith journey. The fellowship Erica found in CCO has been one of the greatest blessings she has experienced. They made her feel welcome and cared for. “They made life with Christ seem attractive,” says Erica. This eventually led her to apply for CCO’s Impact mission.  She spent the summer with university students from across the country, living in community, and being trained in the New Evangelization.

 

Now Erica is a CCO campus missionary. Her passion for her faith, fellowship and evangelization all flow from her relationship with Christ. And to think, it all began with a simple survey.

 

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