College is tough. Between classes, clubs, sports, relationships, and missing family, it gets very stressful. Trying to actively keep the faith and pray, fast, abstain from certain activities, and go to church regularly adds to the struggle.
Many times a semester I’ll find myself worn down from all of these things and needing a break. I’ve find an oasis in the OCF at Penn State, and hope you have at your school, too. But every once in a while it’s nice to have something special to help refresh you. One of my favorite events like this is Day of Prayer.
I’ve participated in the Day of Prayer each year I’ve been in college so far. This year it’s from March 13th at 6PM Eastern to the 14th at 6PM. If you don’t know how Day of Prayer works, for 24 hours, OCF chapters around the country will be on a live stream for one hour-increments praying in front of a camera. You can easily go online any time during those 24 hours and watch other Orthodox students in Pennsylvania or Kansas or even Hawaii praying. When you go to sleep on the 13th you can take a peek or look when you wake up on the 14th. Following along is easy and flexible. Just go to the OCF website and find the link and watch and pray along.
It’s also really enriching to participate, as I have the past two years. If you’re looking to refresh yourself from the grind of college, have a great bonding hour with the members in your OCF, or just pray, it’s a great way to do so. Staying up really late and walking to church with your OCF friends to pray together in an otherwise empty church at 3AM is a great way to refresh your spiritual life.
Heck, I enjoyed it so much I purchased a Psalter that week so I could pray in a similar fashion in my own room. It truly is a valuable experience individually and as an OCF group. I certainly felt a lot closer to those I prayed with for that hour afterward and think you will too. And I’ll never forget being in that candle lit chapel and seeing the candle light and shadows dance around on the icon of Christ.
So if you can, go for it and sign your OCF up to pray on the live stream. Try to personally do it at least once in your college career. And if you can’t, try to tune in and watch for a little bit on the stream. Also make sure to spread the word to your other Orthodox college friends so they know about this amazing opportunity!
Tim is a Penn State Schreyer Honors student junior double majoring in Management (with an HR concentration) and Labor & Employment Relations, with a minor in the Legal Environment of Business. He has been an active member of the Penn State-University Park campus OCF his entire collegiate career and is now the active president for the club. Tim is also the current OCF Philadelphia District Leader. Feel free to hit Tim up on Twitter or LinkedIn to talk basketball or Orthodoxy.