Devotional Life

A personal devotional life is always a blessing. At the Chapel, we're ready to help you maintain your present devotional life or make a fresh start on one. Here are just a few resources that are available to every member of the University community. You are also welcome to stop in the Chapel to pray even when worship services are not in process.

Spiritual Retreats

The university offers a series of retreats throughout the year that lead participants in the disciplines of prayer and spiritual discernment, especially in the area of life vocation.

Quietly appreciating and meditating on the beauty of God’s good creation… sharing caring conversation with a new friend… listening to God’s word with new ears… That’s what the Lifetree Retreat is all about. In quiet contemplation, you are invited to learn to listen to God through individual and group activities, prayer and worship, Bible study, and fellowship. Watch for your opportunity to participate in a retreat. There is no charge and transportation and meals are included. 

The Lifetree Retreat is intended to help participants find ways to hear God’s voice in their daily lives.  Whether you have questions about vocation, relationships, faith, whatever, you will learn how to quiet yourself and listen for God’s voice.

The next retreat is Feb. 14-16, 2014. The group will gather for a meal on campus at 5 p.m. before heading to the Lindenwood Retreat Center. Return by 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, Feb. 16.  There is no fee: retreat activities, lodging, food and transportation are provided. For more information, contact retreat leader:  Prof. Lisa Driver (464-5261 or Lisa.Driver@valpo.edu).  Sign up with Doreen Olguin-Flores (ASB College of Arts & Sciences Bldg./Rm 372).  Capacity is 20 students.  Deadline for registration:  5 p.m. on January 24, 2014.
Lindenwood 

Bible Studies

CRU (Campus Crusade) offers a Bible Study Mondays at 9 p.m. in the Union Brown & Gold Room. SIS (Sisters in Spirit), BRO (Brothers Reaching Out) and other organizations also offer regular Bible Study. Contact one of the university pastors for more information.

In addition, all are welcome to attend the on-going Chinese-language Bible study on campus, held each Sunday from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Christopher Center, Room 205. Whether you were born in China or are learning the language and wish to practice its use, you are welcome to attend. Bibles are available. For more information, please email valpo.cca@gmail.com or visit their page.

The book of Hebrews is the fall 2013 Bible study focus

The Resurrection Labyrinth and "I AM" Garden

Outside the Chapel on the east end of the building you will find the Resurrection Labyrinth and "I AM" Garden, given in memory of Nicole Unrath, class of 2003, by her family and friends.

A labyrinth is an ancient symbol that relates to wholeness. It is not a maze, because a maze is like a puzzle to be solved. Rather, a labyrinth has only one path, from one continuous line. The way in is also the way out. You are welcome to visit the labyrinth at any time. Our labyrinth includes markers along the way with "I AM" statements of Jesus, for Christ is our journey and our destination.

Some general guidelines for walking a labyrinth are:

  • Focus: Pause and wait at the entrance. Become quiet and centered.
  • Experience: Walk purposefully. Observe the process. When you reach the center, stay there and focus several minutes. Say a prayer. Leave when it seems appropriate. Be attentive on the way out.
  • Exit: Turn and face the entrance. You may wish to give an acknowledgement of ending, such as "Amen."
  • Reflect: After walking the labyrinth, reflect back on your experience.

You can also download a copy of the brochure that tells you more about the labyrinth.

Daily Morning Prayer

piano

The single most frequent worship opportunity during the school year is Morning Prayer at 10 a.m. each class day. It's just 20 minutes long. Worship styles change from day to day, season to season, with music ranging from ancient to contemporary. Morning Prayer is a time for students, faculty, and staff to gather as a community of faith, to hear God’s word, pray, and give praise.

 

Christian Mentors

Are you someone who takes your faith seriously? Do you want to let your faith permeate your life, studies and work?
Consider signing up for a mentor! Read more about it.

 

Get a daily dose of encouragement via text

Text 989-860-9030 for daily scriptural encouragement for your walk at Valpo. You can also "like" ValpoWalk on Facebook or follow ValpoWalk on Twitter.

 

Fellowship Hall and Peer Ministry

Fellowship is an intentional Christian community within the residence halls that seeks “a way of life abundant…. This way of life – abundant not in money and possessions but in mercy and hope – is given not only for the sake of those who are its members.  It is given that these might live for the sake of others, indeed for the sake of all creation.  The challenge is to discern how to live this way of life…at your moment in history.”  (From Practicing our Faith:  A Way for Searching People). 

Commitment to exploring the way of life abundant and its implications for personal, professional and civic life, common prayer, leadership, worship, and service are expected of all members.  Scripture and Practicing our Faith:  A Way for Searching Peopleserve as the primary texts for the group’s life together.

Fellowship is strengthened by diversity in the Christian traditions and expressions of its members.

Fellowship is a ministry of the Chapel of the Resurrection and is advised by Pr. Char, University Pastor. 

New for 2013-2014 is a team of Peer Ministers who will be a part of Fellowship Hall in Guild Memorial, but who also live and serve in the Freshmen Residence Halls.

 

VU Prayer Book

In celebration of Valpo's 150th anniversary, a new prayer book became available in August 2008 to members of the campus community. In Thy Light We See Light: The Valparaiso University Prayer Book includes prayers from Valpo's outgoing and incoming presidents and traditional campus events such as Advent Vespers, as well as prayers related to faith and learning, stress and struggle, giving thanks, relationships, and sorrow and loss. Also contained in the book are examples of varied ways of praying and how one can practice these different approaches. Copies are available for purchase at the University Book Center or online at valpo.edu/bookcenter.

 

Some Thoughts on Silence

Silence has been highly prized as a Christian discipline because as one attends to God’s voice, spoken during private prayer, worship service, the proclaiming of scripture, in solitary walks, etc., one’s inner being becomes focused and intent on receiving life, blessing, and spiritual riches from the One who is the source of life. The Taize Worship Around the Cross service offered during the Morning Prayer rotation makes good use of silence.

One needs to grow used to being in silence, for we tend to become uncomfortable when there are no sounds to distract us.  Many of us struggle to still the chatter in our minds in order to pray and to create a space to receive God’s word to us in prayer.

Silence may be considered simply a peaceful attentiveness to God’s presence, a time to be quiet and let your soul breathe deeply once again.  It may be a time for reflection on the words and music heard, a time for personal prayer and confession, a time to rest in God’s peace from the busyness of life.  Silence can be a means of being in touch with feelings and thoughts, as well as an invitation to discern with God’s eyes and ears what needs to change in us for us to better reflect the image and likeness of God in whom we have been created.