Two interns at White Violet Center for Eco-Justice presented their final projects yesterday.
Internship opportunities can be anywhere from three months to 12 months and each intern completes a project of their choosing before they leave. Each project is as individual as each intern. They are always amazing and come with great stories of lessons learned. Both projects presented this week came from the heart.
Rebecca Goodman, of Indianapolis and Sullivan County, Indiana, came to the Sisters of Providence and White Violet Center for a summer internship as a Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College student three months ago and is leaving having transferred to Indiana State University. She will be a sophomore environmental sciences major at ISU.
She began her project presentation by saying, “I love plants.” She and the other interns have spent the last few months immersed in all matter of plants while planting, watering, weeding, and harvesting organic vegetables and flowers. Rebecca went on to say she wishes there was a way she could have that all year round.
“So I made jewelry as a little piece of White Violet Center,” she said.
Each necklace and pair of earrings display dried flowers, leaves or alpaca fiber. She found a dead bee one day and decided to try to preserve that, as well.
“It was absolutely amazing doing it,” she said. “I felt so artsy.”
She said she was thinking of the staff, sisters and interns while she was making the necklaces that are made from layers of resin that she then sanded and polished.
Intern and Providence Associate Ezra Meadors, of Chicago, also presented his final project. He designed a one-hour prayer service for future interns centered around Saint Mother Theodore Guerin. It includes prayers, Psalms, readings and questions for quiet reflection or sharing.
He read one of the intercessions aloud during his presentation:
For bountiful harvest each week for our CSA members, farm store and farmers’ market customers, we pray.
Providence God, hear our prayer.
He also read the following opening prayer aloud:
Oh, God, whose name is Providence, and whose face is always turned toward our world, we thank you for your constant fidelity.
Our path into the future, at times, seems unclear. Yet we turn to you with patience and trust. Leaning upon your goodness and strength, we believe we will always be sustained and supported.
Renew us as we dedicate ourselves to the mission of love, mercy and justice.
Strengthen our faith, increase our hope and give us unbounded love. That, like Mother Theodore, our lives might always be at the service of the marginalized.
Followed by a reading from Saint Mother Theodore:
“We have gone out several times this summer to gather simples and linden blossoms. In each excursion, we discover something marvelous, beautiful and useful in the magnificent forest of Indiana. At each step, we can admire the grandeur, the power, the goodness of God. How beautifully he provides for all our wants. I would even say our pleasures. I love our woods in solitude very much.”
The prayer service ends with a letter Ezra wrote from Saint Mother Theodore Guerin to the interns.
“I want the interns to feel that connection to Mother Theodore,” he said. “She walked right here. I think that is so remarkable.”
Ezra dedicated his project to Sister Barbara Doherty, who attended the presentations.
It was another amazing afternoon together at White Violet Center that ended with make-your-own ice cream sundaes. This was only a portion of what the newest intern Liv Charlton, of Des Moines, Iowa, and new volunteer Hory Chikez, of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, are experiencing in their first week here. More to come about them soon!