Who knew a one-week trip could change you so much? I was one of the fortunate students given the opportunity to participate in the Civil Rights Pilgrimage this past summer. Beforehand, I thought the trip would be a big history lesson in which I learned more about the civil rights movement that changed our country 50 years ago. I was also excited to make my first trip outside Wisconsin, visiting other states for the first time in my life!
It was overwhelming — and life changing. The National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Alabama, was one of the last sites we visited on our Civil Rights Pilgrimage. For me, it was the most affecting. Rounding a corner as I entered the main section of the memorial, I was confronted by a giant image of a black teenager being lynched before 10,000 cheering white onlookers. For a moment, it paralyzed me. I stared at the spectators in the photo, many of them smiling and even laughing at the young man’s torture.
To say the Pilgrimage was amazing would simply be an understatement. This trip changed me more than any other trip I have ever taken because it was not just a trip. It was a Pilgrimage — a quest, a week-long, soul-searching journey that took my classmates and me to historic sites throughout the South and raised big questions about our faith and its meaning in our lives.
Divine Savior Holy Angels seniors embarked on a two-week service immersion experience called Vocare. Vocare, the Latin word meaning “to draw forth” or “to call,” is the capstone of each student’s four years of service. Each senior serves two full weeks in the greater Milwaukee community, serving children, elderly or those with special needs. Several seniors shared their experiences with the school during a January 29 assembly.