Losing someone we love can evoke powerful emotions. Some people break down immediately and may put themselves back together right away. For others emotions simmer inside until finally, sometimes months or years later, they explode. In this SPIRIT issue a young man finds grief motivating his climb to reach the top of a mountain. Grief takes time to discover the ways a person is still with us, time for memories to inspire us rather than cause pain.
Key Lyrics: I used to be so happy but without you here I feel so low / I watched you as you left but I can never seem to let you go / …It’s buried deep inside me but I feel there’s something you should know / I will never forget you
Questions: When have you experienced the loss of a loved one? How did you deal with your grief? Why doesn’t ignoring feelings work when we lose someone we care about?
Britt Nicole’s song “Amazing Life” is all about how beautiful the world around us is. However, it’s easy to forget this as we rush through our day with school or work, constantly plugging ourselves in to the latest gossip and technological trends. SPIRIT explores the experience of city kids who work at a farm called Dream of Wild Health farm. They connect with Earth, with each other, and with their Native American history. By working at the farm with the plants and vegetables that have sustained their community in years past, they keep their old traditions alive and connect with the beauty all around us.
Key Lyrics: It’s a beau-beau-beautiful world we’ve been given / From the top of the sky to the ocean / I’ll never understand it all (understand it all) / It must be supernatural
Questions: What are some traditions that you value? What are some Earth-centered traditions you would like to bring back to your home, school, or community? How do you connect and care for the Earth? Take a walk and leave your phone at home. What beauty do you see in the world around you?
When Alessia Cara sings out to let your face “shine, shine, shine,” she celebrates the grace that every individual brings to our lives and communities. SPIRIT celebrates the Starry Night Prom that students at De La Salle High School host for people who are disabled. They welcome more than a thousand people. The prom has become a favorite event for the hosts and the guests as both delight in friendship and happiness.
Key lines: We will carve our place into time and space / We will find our way, or we’ll make a way, say hey, hey / Hey find your grace, don’t hide your face / And let it shine, shine, shine
Questions: How do differently-abled students fit in at your school and community? What have your learned from volunteering with people unlike you? How does volunteering build relationships and understanding?
When someone we love dies, it can seem like the end of the world. This week’s Spirit deals with loss. It also deals with resurrection. The stories in this issue tell us that while someone may not physically be with us any longer, they live in our hearts and minds. The song “One Call Away” reminds us that when we need to be supported (or when someone needs our support), all we have to do is ask. We’re not alone, not without them.
Key Lyrics: No matter where you go / You know you’re not alone / I’m only one call away / I’ll be there to save the day / Superman got nothing on me / I’m only one call away
Questions: When have you lost someone you loved? What do you most remember about the person? In what way do you experience the person still with you? How have you helped someone through an illness? How did the illness affect your relationship?
Holy Week is a time to reflect on the last days of Jesus’ life — his last supper with his friends, his trial, crucifixion, and death. Throughout his ministry, Jesus teaches humility, compassion, and forgiveness. In his final actions he lives out his message in wholehearted love for us. The song “You’re All I Need” expresses how we look to Jesus as a guide. It reflects on how we follow Jesus in our relationships with friends, family, and neighbors, how we can be beacons of hope.
Key Lyrics: You shine like a light blazing down on me / Instead of reaching out, I trace your skin to see / In my head you’re a constant heartbeat / I feel you rushing through my veins / You’re all I need, you always come for me
Questions: Reflect back on the past weeks of Lent. What have you discovered about Jesus, about your commitment as his follower? What practices do you want to continue year-round? In what liturgies of Holy Week will you take part?
All relationships start out on a foundation of trust. We have a right to feel safe and secure. If we don’t, the relationship becomes toxic. Breaking trust changes not only how we view ourselves and others, but it can also leave permanent scars. Sometimes we have people we can turn to, people who will support and help us understand what happened. Other times we may be too scared to go to anyone for fear of judgement and blame. However, by dealing with the experience, we can eventually figure out a way to move past it and rebuild our trust in ourselves and others. Sia’s song is about surviving a difficult experience and finding peace within oneself.
Key Lyrics: And I will stay up through the night / Let’s be clear, I won’t close my eyes / And I know that I can survive / I walked through fire to save my life
Questions: When have you experienced betrayal? How did you handle the experience? Did you tell anyone about it? Why or why not? What helped you move on from the experience? How can you use the experience to help others who may be going through the same thing?