Milestones and a new adventure

It is hard to believe that is almost 2 years since I arrived in Chicago to study at Catholic Theological Union! I finished my coursework for my Masters of Arts Degree in Theology (major in Ethics, minor in Spirituality) last semester.  This summer I have been busy reviewing my research, papers and notes to draft the questions that will be the basis for my oral comprehensive exams in November.

I met with my advisor last week to review my first draft of questions, and just e-mailed off a revised set to my board for approval, which I hope are close to the final product.  Next step is to develop outlines and study guides!

Preparing the questions really was a meaningful process. I learned a lot in the effort, in no small part because turning my ethics papers into comps questions involved a bit of re-engineering.  Typically, my papers involve substantial research and social analysis into a topic or issue to which I then apply insights and methods from theological ethics.  However, because the purpose of the exam is not to show how much I learned about climate change, human trafficking, racism, or the feminization of migration, but rather to prove my knowledge, grasp, and facility with theological ethics, I had to flip everything on its head.  In the process, I surprised myself about how much I understand now about the Catholic moral tradition. Which of course is the point of the degree!

My advisor encouraged me to go ahead and draft outlines now for the questions, while I still have this depth of knowledge on the forefront of my brain. So now that the questions are finished, that's my plan for the next two days.

Then on Tuesday I switch gears and attend the Summer Institute for the National Religious Vocation Conference. Yes, in the mix of whatever else is up next for me in my life and ministry as a Sister of St. Joseph of Peace, I am excited that vocation ministry will be part of that mix. And I am grateful that my community is sending me to this series of workshops so that I can gain the knowledge I need!

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