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Lessons Learned: A Spiritual Awakening Through Volunteer Service in Cincinnati

I’m Sudha, and I’ve joined as a volunteer aide at the St. Boniface School in Cincinnati. I decided to become a volunteer after experiencing a significant loss in my life, which led me to feel a strong spiritual calling to help others. I wanted to provide assistance to those in need, regardless of their background, connections, or financial situation.

Living and working in Cincinnati has been an incredible and unique experience for me. I’ve had the chance to become a part of a diverse community, where people of different ages, backgrounds, and perspectives come together and make it feel like home.

Cincinnati truly became my home thanks to the warmth and support of the local Sisters of Mercy. They not only introduced me to the city but also involved me in various community activities. Our spiritual discussions and visits to places of worship have left me with a deep appreciation for the immeasurable value of compassionate service. They were always just a phone call or text message away whenever I needed help with anything related to my home or health.

Working with the students at the school has been an emotional journey filled with many ups and downs. I’ve had the opportunity to witness the many nuances of a school’s environment: seeing the joy in a non-English speaking student’s eyes when they understood a concept, feeling upset seeing the tears of a girl who couldn’t find her jacket on a cold day, and the empathy I felt when a student was upset due to name-calling by their peers. Whether positive or negative, after living in Georgia for 20+ years, being here has been a fulfilling spiritual and learning experience for me; I’m grateful to be part of this community.

Looking back, I initially set out to teach and support students who were struggling, but in the process, I’ve gained so much more than I ever imagined.

Sudha Ganta: Cincinnati, Ohio

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