Time Is a Teacher

With advancing age comes religious wisdom.

A recent survey by the Pew Research Center shows that, consistent with popular perception, older adults are more religiously active than younger adults. Two-thirds of respondents 65 and older said religion is very important to them, compared with just over half of those ages 30 to 49 and just 44% of those ages 18 to 29. Makes sense: With age comes wisdom — or, at least, it should. As Pope John Paul II put it: “The passage of time helps us to see our experiences in a clearer light and softens their painful side. … Experience teaches that daily difficulties, by God’s grace, often contribute to people’s growth and to the forging of their character.”

Cistercian Father Thomas Esposito says of discerning one’s college choice, ‘There has to be something that tugs at you and makes you want to investigate it further. And then the personal encounter comes in the form of a visit or a chat with a student or alumnus who communicates with the same enthusiasm or energy about the place. And then that love of a place can be a seed which germinates in your own heart through prayer.’

Choose a College With a Discerning Mind and Heart

Cistercian Father Thomas Esposito, assistant professor of theology at the University of Dallas (UD) and subprior (and former vocations director) of the Cistercian Abbey of Our Lady of Dallas, drew from his experience as both a student and now monastic religious to help those discerning understand the parallels between religious and college discernment.