So, I wrote in my last blog that I would elaborate a bit on what I did for my internship and my internship report. Our school director, Pierre, calls the internship a personal faith project. As I wrote in my last blog, for me it was experimenting with everything I've ever been interested in. Firstly, it was prayer, and that remained primary throughout the entire eight months. I knew from the beginning that prayer would precede everything else I did out here; so, I surrounded myself with resources that would birth, nourish, and sustain a habit of prayer. That in itself has been and will continue to be quite a journey for me. Secondly, my search for a vocation (AKA the career I was meant to pursue) motivated and initiated many of the diverse experiences I've had in this big city. To summarize, for weeks, sometimes months, at a time I seriously considered each of the following careers: musician, social activist, chaplain, journalist, farmer, music therapist, and teacher. I've written new songs, I've met with an elderly man once or twice a week, I've reported on events for a local newspaper, I've learned the ethics of how we eat (mostly thanks to my wife and Wendell Berry), I've gone to information sessions and conferences pertaining to these interests, I've met with various faith-leaders, whether Buddhist, Catholic, or Evangelical, and, finally, I've learned about the importance and innate value of work. In other words, I've learned that our work, the daily tasks that each one of us has, whether it be at home or outside the home, religious or secular, is the substance of our spirituality; it's where our faith is "wrought out at the coal-face", as Lesslie Newbigin describes it. In response to this realization and through lots of prayer and practical logic provided by my wife, I decided a few months ago to return to the career I thought I was leaving behind when I came out here. Thus, I've applied and been accepted to l'Université de Montréal for their masters program in English Studies, starting next fall. Of course, my primary obligation (besides Lauren and Dennis) will be to the Urban Cultures YWAM school that Lauren and I will help run the next two years. The classes for my masters will be worked in around that. Nonetheless, I'm happy to be progressing towards a career in teaching literature, no matter what form that may take.
So, at the end of the eight months, while reflecting on all these experiences and realizations, I decided that music would be a good vehicle to crystallize them. Thus, for a good two weeks before the internship report was due, I scoured my journals and notes, highlighted, wrote down, cut-up, and grouped together anything that seemed to represent a common theme that was prevalent during my time here. I was determined to finish 8 to 10 songs, record them, and burn them onto a CD to hand in on the due date. Much thanks to my divinely patient wife who generously allowed me the time to write and record, and thanks to my fellow classmate Andrew Koole who supplied the Apple Garage Band program and his sweet harmonies, I was able to accomplish my goal. The 10 songs on the CD are very raw, recorded in about 3 hours (compare that to the near 300 hundred hours my last CD took), but nonetheless are adequately representative of my/our experiences out here. I'm excited to share, continue writing, and playing these songs with some of my friends and family back home.