Stories of Stewards: Shauna Stewart
As part of our ongoing engagement process, we have come to realize the importance of parishioners sharing their personal stories of how they have connected with Saint Clement as an important factor in their lives. As a feature twice a month, we share the stories and reflections of our engaged parishioners who are living a stewardship life of prayer, service, and giving. This week we hear from Shauna Stewart:
I have been a parishioner at Saint Clement since moving to Chicago in 2013. I had never visited Chicago before moving here straight out of undergrad for a job—a job which I quit after three months. I did not have many reasons left to stay in Chicago and struggled to find direction in my newly independent, post-college life. During this time of uncertainty, my new parish helped provide a place of community, belonging, and direction. I attended the young adult bible study, played volleyball with the young adult group, became a Eucharistic Minister at 7:00 p.m. Mass, attended daily Mass, and went on the young adult retreat. I met numerous wonderful, faith-filled people, many of whom remain some of my closest friends.
Since then, Saint Clement and Chicago have truly become home for me. Through all my personal and professional transitions in the last four years Saint Clement remains constant, a place where I find meaning and direction in my life through an increased faith life supported by Saint Clement’s five anchors.
Theology on Tap helped draw me into the parish and continues to be a highlight of my summer, helping me to learn and belong, particularly through volunteering and welcoming newcomers to the parish. I have given back financially through Sunday Giving and appreciate how this supports the wonderful programs and facilities at Saint Clement, as well as other worthy causes through Clement Commits. This past year, I endeavored to become more involved with the parish beyond the young adult community through becoming a first grade catechist in the Religious Education program. This provided me a chance to pray, serve, and learn along with earnest first graders who helped me to reflect on the most important parts of my faith. Saint Clement has also connected me to events in the larger Catholic community of Chicago, the most profound experience being the Good Friday Walk for Peace in Englewood. As I prepare for my next major life transition, my marriage in October, Saint Clement provided my fiancé and I with a chance to learn about our relationship and faith through the Pre Cana marriage preparation program. I hope to continue to find ways to give back to Saints Clement for all it has given me.