Our semiannual Breaking Bread event continues to be a popular and cherished tradition for Notre Dame undergraduates. This dinner and evening of spiritual discussion draws the interest of a great many students, as well as professors, enticed by the promise of food for both the body and soul. Students and professors enjoy the opportunity to listen to a thoughtful speaker and share an excellent meal and discussion.
At this spring’s Breaking Bread on April 28, 2009, Prof. John Staud delivered a thoughtful and encouraging reflection on saying ‘yes’ to God in our lives. Staud, the Director of Pastoral Formation and Administration for the University of Notre Dame Alliance for Catholic Education, began by reading the account of the calling of the first disciples from the Gospel of John. Jesus responded to the disciples’ questions by saying, “Come, and you will see” (John 1:39). There is always uncertainty whether we are truly following God’s will, Staud said, but “miracles happen when we make commitments.” Saying ‘yes’ in our lives also means saying ‘no’ to other things, said Staud. He emphasized to the students the importance of thoughtful and prayerful discernment, and the value of the wisdom of family and friends, in making the big decisions regarding their majors, professions, and spouses. Staud shared an anecdote from his own process of discernment, and cited the value of advice from his good friends and family—those that knew him best. Staud also cautioned students that saying ‘yes’ to God is not often easy. “To be a recipient of Christ’s cross costs nothing, to follow it costs everything.” He also reminded students that they are called to lives of service. Staud concluded with a quote from Mother Teresa. “We are called not to be successful, but to be faithful.”