Archive for January, 2018

The Year of Influence

Contributed by Denthew Learey 

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Influence is the ability to impact the character, development, or behavior of others. There’s a lot out there in our society that influences us: media, social networks, movies, education, peers, friends, family, etc. Sadly, not all of these influences are good and can even have a bad impact on our lives. It’s time to put this negative barrage to an end.

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That’s why CARP is so important. CARP stands for the values and principles that help us become the light in a dark and troubled world. Let the victories of this past year fill us with strength as we proudly make a positive influence in 2018.

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Victory List

  • 14 chapters were officially registered on campus. This gives us legitimacy on campus, a voice, and further resources and opportunities.
  • Deepened partnerships with local supporters and national organizations like the American Clergy Leadership Conference (ACLC) and the Women’s Federation for World Peace (WFWP)
  • Connected to the world – 120 participants traveled to Japan and Korea to have a priceless intercultural exchange with Korea CARP, Japan CARP, and others.
  • And more…

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At times we may be overcome by fear and doubt when trying to stand up. But, in those moments, remember what we’ve already accomplished and overcome. You’re not alone. Students and CARP chapters across the nation hosted rallies and events that reminded us to be confident and proud of all the good that CARP stands for.

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2018: The Year of Influence

At a leadership retreat at the beginning of this year, our National CARP President, Teresa Rischl, declared 2018 the year we become intentional about the influence and positive impact we want to have in our relationships, campuses, society, and world. With the foundation of all we’ve done, let’s move forward with confidence. As Mother Moon similarly said, ‘what are you afraid of?’

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We have a whole new year ahead of us and so much potential as CARP to influence many students positively. Let the testimonies of the past bring life to the testimonies of the present and future of what’s possible.

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Oftentimes, we might think our influence is small and has no impact on the universe. Jonathan Safran Foer in Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close has a different mindset, and shares this story:

“When Dad was still alive, and I got incredibly heavy boots about how relatively insignificant life is, and how, compared to the universe and compared to time, it didn’t even matter if I existed at all.

When Dad was tucking me in that night and we were talking about the book, I asked if he could think of a solution to that problem. ‘What problem?’

‘The problem of how relatively insignificant we are.’

He said, ‘Well, what would happen if a plane dropped you in the middle of the Sahara Desert and you picked up a single grain of sand with tweezers and moved it one millimetre?’

I said, ‘I’d probably die of dehydration.’

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He said, ‘I just mean right then, when you moved that single grain of sand. What would that mean?’

I said, ‘I dunno, what?’

He said. ‘Think about it.’

I thought about it. ‘I guess I would have moved a grain of sand.’

‘Which would mean?’

‘Which would mean I moved a grain of sand?’

‘Which would mean you changed the Sahara.’

‘So?’

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‘So? So the Sahara is a vast desert. And it has existed for million of years. And you changed it!’

‘That’s true!’ I said, sitting up. ‘I changed the Sahara!’

‘Which means?’ he said.

‘What? Tell me.’

‘Well, I’m not talking about painting the Mona Lisa or curing cancer. I’m just talking about moving that one grain of sand one millimetre.’

‘Yeah?’

‘If you hadn’t done it, human history would have been one way …’

‘Uh-huh?’

‘But, you did do it, so …’

I stood on the bed, pointed my fingers at the fake stars, and screamed: ‘I changed the universe!’

‘You did.’”

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You are the Change

We might have just moved a piece of sand one millimeter, but still we made an impact on the universe. This doesn’t compare to the colossal steps we make every day on our campuses, in our chapters, and through our relationships. Each act of love influences the culture around us and creates a positive impact. So don’t hold back. Make a change. Reach out. Help others. Let 2018 be the year we transform the culture around us into a culture of heart so we can take steps to truly be one family under God.

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What can you do? Get involved! There is strength and power in numbers. We can make an even greater impact when more people get involved. Don’t have a chapter near you? Start one yourself! We started a weekly support series designed to help inspired individuals take the steps to start a chapter. If you’re interested, contact jennifer@carplife.org. Together, let’s make this an incredible year of heart, joy, truth, and love.

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CARP Bay Area Serves on MLK Day

Contributed by Gabriela Von Euw, CARP Bay Area

IMG_8324editPicture with the Mayor of Oakland at the Oakland Animal Shelter (OAS) on Saturday, January 13th.

“Everybody can be great, because everybody can serve.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

Every year on the third Monday of January, Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday is celebrated nationally through service projects, as a way to honor MLK Jr.’s efforts to stand up for peace and better our country. Martin Luther King, Jr. has inspired millions to go out, serve others, and lend a helping hand to our communities. This year, over 2,000 volunteers attended the Oakland service project to honor Dr. King’s birthday weekend. 

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Volunteer Service is not just about cleaning, gardening, pulling weeds, etc., but about what we can learn about ourselves and each other. It’s a time when people from many different backgrounds and beliefs gather together to help make a difference in the world, letting go of the barriers that may divide us. It’s a peaceful time where we can all do something small to create a big change.

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This year, we had many projects available in the Bay Area where volunteers could serve by picking up trash, re-painting old walls and gates, weeding, gardening, and more. Our two main projects were at the Rose Garden and at the Oakland Animal Shelter. At the Rose Garden, we had 60 people come from the Bay Area Family Church (BAFC). We also had Boy Scouts, High School students, CARP members, and other community members participate. We went around the gardens in small groups clearing the vines and weeds around the trees. It was tough work, but everyone remained high spirited working together.

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“Our service project was at Rose Garden, and I was caught off-guard to see how many beer bottles were surrounding the tree area which we were responsible to clean. It was clear that the garden was being misused. However, while working with other volunteers, I learned that the garden was also a place used for presenting ‘Mother of the Year’ awards to female citizens who best embodied ‘motherhood.’ I felt that despite what I saw in the garden, by serving and cleaning it, I was contributing to reviving the garden for that heavenly purpose.” – Junta Naito, CARP Bay Area 

IMG_8480aaGroup photo of the BAFC volunteers at the Oakland Rose Garden. 

Every year, a group goes out from the BAFC to volunteer at the Rose Garden which Oakland greatly appreciates. On Saturday, a small group of about eight of high school and CARP college students went out to the Oakland Animal Shelter to put together kennel beds for the animals in the shelter and re-painted the fading yellow gates. We also had a few others from the Oakland community and Oakland counsel join us in the service work.

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“As a young college student, I am building deeper roots in my beliefs and values. [School] makes me face polarized views in many different avenues. It is sometimes exhausting to deal with. There is so much in the world that people disagree about; however, one thing that almost everyone can come to common ground is acts of service. I was moved to see so many groups and individuals come out to simply serve the community. It gave me hope that someday we can find common ground on a bigger scale, so we can come accomplish even greater things.” – Erika Gordon, CARP Bay Area

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The Mayor of Oakland, Libby Schaaf, visited and helped at each project. At the end of the project, we took a group picture with the mayor at the Animal Shelter. It was a successful weekend of service with many hardworking people from all over coming together to beautify our community we live in! Let’s keep the spirit of serving beyond this day!

Check out more about what CARP Bay Area does on their Facebook page! CARP is all about bettering the community around us.

If you have an inspiring story, send it to jennifer@carplife.org

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