Aida Lopez is a rising senior at Dominican University. She is double majoring in Mathematics and Business Management. Through a program at Dominican, Ministry En Lo Cotidiano (MELC), or “Ministry in the everyday,” she has served as a part-time intern at Taller de José since September 2014. In the video below she shares about her experiences at Taller de José.
MELC is a leadership development and faith formation program for undergraduate students with a goal of developing Latin@ lay leaders for the future of the Church and the Latin@ community in the United States. Currently, Latin@s make up more than 50% of the US population of Catholics under the age of 25 and those numbers are even higher in the Sunbelt states. Dominican University is uniquely positioned to undertake vocational formation as a Catholic institution with a distinctly Dominican charism that is also a Hispanic-Serving Institution. The program draws on parish and community partnerships on Chicago’s Southwest side and the near-West suburbs to create a dynamic internship program supported by theological reflection.
Aida shares, “Each week, we spend nine hours at our community site and also have an hour of theological reflection with other interns. This hour we get to speak of our common experiences centered on a relevant theme, pray together as a community, and speak of the challenges and beautiful gifts we continue to receive. I’m beyond blessed to have found my community site, Taller de José. Honestly, when I visit Taller de José and theological reflection, it’s like all my worries, priorities and everything school-related gets blocked and I’m immersed in the PRESENT LIFE. This internship has brought me to reflect about what I want to do, how will I serve the community, where I want to go with my education, but most importantly, where God fits into all of this. It is a truly unique and beautiful program.”
Taller de José feels equally blessed to have had the opportunity to work with both of our MELC students this year; they have brought so much energy, creativity, and insight to our community.