Vincentians of Wherever: My Vincentian Journey Towards Simplicity & Awareness

by | May 21, 2017 | Formation, Reflections

On the Medium Blog Meet me at the Mission, DePaul graduating student Cece Metzdorff writes,

When did the word “simple” obtain a negative connotation?


While the dictionary may define simple as “easy,” I would like to disagree. I think simplicity is hard. Simplicity is hard because it requires deliberate actions and choices. To live simply and with humility is a core Vincentian value, and one that resonates deeply with me.


“Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” — Lao Tzu


To live simply requires daily reflection, another core Vincentian value. Reflection gives me time to be grateful for all that I have been given and what adds value to my life. Reflecting daily on what adds value to our lives allows us to simplify and make room for the important things in life. Living simply has made me more grateful for each and every thing I bring into my life.


That is why my mission statement is to live intentionally and deliberately.


Our intentions shape our actions. To live without intention is to live carelessly. We must make each action deliberate so that we understand how our actions, or lack of actions, affect others.


“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.” — Henry David Thoreau


So, how did my journey bring me here?


My Catholic faith has always been part of my identity. I grew up going to church every Sunday, praying before dinner every night, and attending Catholic elementary and middle-school. My parents even met at church if you can believe it. Of course, as a child, church was not my favorite activity. I sometimes argued about going, but most of the time I knew it wasn’t worth trying. I was going whether I liked it or not. The “no church, no brunch” warning usually did the trick to convince me. Despite the strong Catholic influence I grew up with, I didn’t truly feel that my spiritual and religious journey was finally my choice until I came to DePaul. No one was forcing me to go to church anymore. So when I did go, it felt like my choice. I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t go as often as I used to before college, but finally being able to choose for myself was a transformative moment in my Vincentian journey.

Read the rest of this lovely and insightful reflection on