Experience

Spiritual Life Programs

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The following gatherings are open to all students

The adolescent years are a rich time for religious and spiritual inquiry, as students want to understand the world and their role in it. Culver’s Spiritual Life Program seeks to facilitate this search for meaning by offering a variety of worship opportunities and programs.

These services and programs represent diverse traditions. Students will select one service preference from the list of options described in this section. Each will meet weekly, will have an assigned meeting place, a distinct style and format, and will be staffed by adults and students with experience in providing religious and spiritual leadership. Attendance at the selected service is mandatory for each student. 

Parents, in consultation with their son or daughter, will complete Spiritual Life's online registration, indicating a service choice. If a student wishes to change the Spiritual Life Service they attend, an email from the parent is required.

Spiritual Life Weekly Services

Buddhist Service

This Service invites students and adults to focus upon the present moment. Student-led sessions introduce various techniques providing an awareness towards breathing and refocusing upon an inner presence. Through this refocusing, participants develop a discipline that develops their ability to control and manage external stress and difficulties within their everyday life.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (off-campus at a local church)

Students are escorted by Dean Rasch to a local church to participate in the Sunday morning service.  

Guided Meditation

This service option is designed to help students choose their own meditation practices. It is based on a variety of traditions. The focus is on mindfulness, self-reflection, self-regulation, and empathy for others.

Hindu Service

This service involves traditional puja, recitation of prayers, studying of sacred texts, and discussion. It helps students integrate mind, spirit, and body to cultivate and live a pure and authentic life that is an extension of their faith.

Interdenominational Christian Chapel

The Christian traditions represented by Culver students are as diverse as those of the culture at large. This service walks a middle road with readings from scripture, a sermon, and time for prayer at every Sunday service. The music is a student and faculty-led blend of traditional hymns and praise and worship songs.

Islamic Studies

Once a week, students gather for the opportunity to learn about Muslim life and practice. Topics include the importance of charity and the significance of religious pilgrimage. Students explore the relevance of the Qur’an and the Prophet’s life to their lives at Culver; they are also given the opportunity to connect with the Muslim community in the South Bend/ Mishawaka area.

Jewish Shabbat Service 

Shabbat, Hebrew for day of rest, is the most important day in the Jewish calendar. Conducted in both Hebrew and English, this service includes the lighting of the Sabbath candles, the recital of Kiddush, and prayers over wine (juice), bread, and the Sabbath day itself. Discussions concerning Jewish life, practice, and world affairs will also take place as a part of this service option.  

Meditative Freewriting

In this small group, students learn and practice a specific freewriting process that utilizes the flow of writing first thoughts. Writing without self-judgment and with introspection are incorporated. Students discover and acknowledge insight and wisdom in the flow of this writing practice. 

Nature Spirituality

This service is offered to students who find their spiritual nourishment by connecting with Nature. The service will include meditative walks in the woods and along the lake, as well as ceremonies that celebrate the cycles and seasons of the year. Among the traditions represented are Native American, Wiccan, Celtic, and other earth-based spiritual traditions.

Painting as a Spiritual Practice

For millennia, the language of painting has expressed the diverse spirit of countless artists and their search for meaning through art.  Artistic expression is by its very nature a blend of the mind, the body, and the spirit, so the practice of painting summons one’s intellectual, physical, and spiritual identities in various measures.  Through this art-making activity, your spiritual self-will unquestionably emerge as you learn to sharpen your perceptions of and deepen your emotional responses to the natural world in all its splendor.  Join our community of artists as we learn to apply color as an expression of our inner, eternal yearning for communion with the divine. 

Philosophers' Café

This Spiritual Life offering enables students to reflect on their lives and the lives of others from the standpoint of various philosophical traditions, both ancient and modern.  In this service, emphasis is given to respectful, engaging dialogue with those who may have divergent viewpoints. A wide variety of topics are addressed. 

Roman Catholic Mass

Mass is the Roman Catholic community coming together to worship and honor God. There are many opportunities for students to be involved in the Mass: helping the priest at the altar, proclaiming the word of the Lord, distributing the Eucharist, leading the congregation in song, or providing music for the Mass. Holy Days of Obligation and Penance services also enable Culver’s Roman Catholic students, faculty, and staff to celebrate the Sacraments together during the school year.

Sacred Flow Yoga

This 45-minute vinyasa-style yoga practice incorporates breathwork, meditation, and intentional movement to promote overall well-being – mind, spirit, and body.