The years you spend with a university community are an ideal time to grow in your faith. Whether you are just beginning to ask questions or have already made a firm commitment to your community of faith and want to grow in your relationship with God, you will find opportunities at Creighton University.
Retreats For Students
Do you need a break from the frenetic pace of college life? We offer a variety of spiritual retreats each semester, some at our wooded Retreat Center in Griswold, Iowa, and some in other beautiful locations, including Niobrara State Park, Custer State Park in the Black Hills of South Dakota, or Camp Carol Joy Holling. If you want quiet meditative retreats, opportunities to find God in nature, or profound experiences of Spirit-filled community, we have the retreat for you.
At the Freshman Retreat in early September, students spend a weekend getting to know each other and to reflect on the beginning of their college experience. Also available are retreats like "Fall Adventure," "Encounter with Christ," "Multicultural Retreat," "Women's Retreat," "Catholic Student Retreat," and "Finding God in All Things," a retreat connecting key moments in the life of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), with significant moments in the lives of students. If you need to get away, reinvigorate your spiritual life, and reconnect with God, there is a retreat for you at Creighton.
This retreat fills up fast, so sign up early on the Campus Ministry website. Learn more about our retreat program, or check out the retreat schedule to find other retreats throughout the year.
Faith Sharing & Faith Development
University is the time in students' spiritual journeys when they begin to integrate their intellectual formation with their faith formation. Questions about God, communities of faith, relationships, and vocation all arise in conjunction with academic studies, building lifelong friendships, growing into mature faith, and exploring potential life choices that will connect personal fulfillment with meeting the needs of the world.
If you desire to grow in your relationship with God and other students, a small faith-sharing group is for you. Students meet weekly to share how God is working in their lives in Christian Life Communities or other small faith-sharing groups. You can put your faith into practice by reaching out to the larger community and volunteering for "Hand-in-Hand," an annual event for adults with special needs, hosted by Creighton students and Campus Ministry. If further ministry opportunities interest you, you might want to participate in the Student Ministry Team, or later in your Creighton career, think about a ministry internship with Campus Ministry. Early in your college life, you may want to connect with one of our pastoral ministers just to talk about your relationship with God, the questions and concerns you may have as you claim your faith commitment as your own, or how you may feel called to serve others. If you are interested in the mentoring and spiritual companionship of a pastoral minister, just let us know.
Grow Where You're Planted
Whatever your beliefs, you can visit Campus Ministry to connect with other students who value their lives of faith and want to grow in love of God and others. You can find local religious leaders representing your faith tradition, places of worship and celebrations and other information about your faith to help you "grow where you're planted." It is important to make connections early with your preferred faith community, or for many students, to connect with your University parish, St. John's. Remember, you are always welcome to visit us at our offices located in Lower Swanson if you need assistance in finding a community of faith to support you on your spiritual journey.
Liturgy & Prayer
For Catholic students, St. John's is your parish away from home. The newly-renovated Gothic church is our University's sanctuary, a central gathering place for times of celebration, sorrow, and giving gratitude and praise to God through the sacramental life of the Church. St. John's hosts daily mass, opportunities for Reconciliation during communal penance services and private confessions, traditional evening vespers, and weekly adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Catholic students might want to serve as lectors, Eucharistic ministers, greeters, liturgical assistants, or sing or play an instrument in one of the choirs. Students of all faith traditions are also welcome to assist in planning all-University Masses, and often serve as banner-bearers, musicians, and greeters. If you want to be involved, there is a place for you in the St. John's family. Plus, you are always welcome to "come to the quiet" for personal prayer, reflection and renewal.
Weekday masses are held in the Upper Church at 7 a.m. and noon, and in the Lower Church chapel at 5 p.m. unless otherwise indicated. Memorial services for deceased relatives, friends and family of Creighton community members are also held annually to remember and pray for our beloved dead.
For those considering joining the Catholic Church, the Rite of Christian Initiation (RCIA) is available as a nine-month catechetical process beginning in the fall and culminating in the initiation rites on Easter Vigil, followed by mystagogia during the Easter season. Baptized and catechized Catholic Christians who wish to be fully initiated into the Church may do so with guidance toward full communion. Catholics who have been baptized, received first Reconciliation and Holy Communion, and have a strong desire for living a faith that does justice may also be prepared for the sacrament of Confirmation. Please contact the Faith Development coordinator in Campus Ministry if any of these opportunities interests you. Also, when the time comes for marriage preparation, the pastoral ministers of St. John's and Campus Ministry are here to assist you. Because St. John's is a symbolic place of spiritual refuge for many students, weddings of former students and baptisms of their children abound here. Please contact St. John's and Campus Ministry for further information.
Creighton as a Jesuit (Ignatian) University
In 1878, Creighton University was born of a partnership of the Creighton family, including brothers, Edward and John, and their wives, Mary Lucretia and Sarah Emily, and the Society of Jesus, or the Jesuits, a Roman Catholic religious order of priests and brothers. There are approximately 30 members of the Jesuit community on Creighton's campus, serving as administrators, professors, chaplains, and pastoral ministers. The Jesuits were founded by Ignatius of Loyola, a 15th c. Basque soldier-turned-mystic who was eventually canonized a saint. His Society's mission was to "help souls," and taught his companions to "find God in all things," by listening to the interior movements of the Holy Spirit in their lives in a course of prayer called "The Spiritual Exercises." The Society of Jesus, in partnership with many Ignatian lay collaborators throughout the world, founded and maintained excellent schools of higher learning, and Creighton University is one of twenty-eight such schools in North America. Most administrators, professors, and staff members serving our Creighton students are not Jesuits, but many are certainly Ignatian in their world-view and life commitments.
The Ignatian vision gives members of the Creighton community a way in which to see the world and share in our common mission of justice:
- Seeing the world as a good place because it was created by God
- Acknowledging and respecting the dignity of each person
- Allowing and expecting education to form the whole person
- Reflecting upon our life experiences leads to learning
- Being "for and with others" is our purpose in life
- Serving others is "for the greater glory of God!" (Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam)
- Developing an ability to find God in all things, in all aspects of our lives
- Seeking a faith that does justice, with a special care for the poor
Our Creighton Mission Statement says: Members of the Creighton community are challenged to reflect on transcendent values, including their relationship with God, in an atmosphere of freedom of inquiry, belief and religious worship. No matter what your faith tradition, you are challenged to grow in your relationship with God while at Creighton are all provided many opportunities for growth. If you want to learn more about Creighton's spiritual heritage, please see The Union of Minds and Hearts, Celebrating the Spiritual Roots of Creighton University, An Introduction for Newcomers, A Collection of Essays by Creighton Authors, (ed., Laura A. Weber, Omaha: Creighton University Press, 2008).