Typically I’ve conceptualized my life as a linear progression of the places I’ve called home—it’s been a convenient way for me to catalogue my experiences and gauge my personal growth. As I’m wrapping up my first year of Candidacy and preparing to move on to the next steps in my discernment, I’m noticing a subtle shift in that perspective.
A growing awareness of the Sinsinawa Dominican focus on relationship has influenced how I view these various epochs of my life—including this most recent one as a Candidate. There’s a vast network of relationships associated with each of these places which I’m realizing provides a much richer lens for thinking about my past. In fact, it was those relationships that actually defined my experiences and led to my personal growth—the geographic locations, as much as I loved them, were just backdrops.
As I contemplate the idea of “itinerancy” as a way of life, I no longer think that the defining factor is the pattern of moving from place-to-place. An itinerant life is more descriptive of a mindset to me now—one where the geography becomes a backdrop and where deepened and/or newly developed relationships take the forefront. The beauty of living somewhere new as a Candidate is the intentionality of the relationship-building—it’s amazing how, over a short 10 months, the precious connections that I made in Atlanta have deepened to become communities of love. I will miss “this place”!
Quincy Howard, Candidate