Bearing Witness: What I Learned Being a Compass Guide

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By Kendall Shoemake

Compass has impacted me in many ways. It has served as an avenue for me to connect with teens and see how they practically implement Christian Science (CS) in their day-to-day lives.

Seeing teens use CS to navigate through some of the tougher decisions that many high schoolers struggle with has been a total joy. It’s been a helpful reminder of the importance of connecting with young Christian Scientists and the value of these discussions.

This opportunity has also allowed me to reflect on my own practice of Christian Science as a teen and the role that DiscoveryBound Outreach played in helping to generate enthusiasm in me for learning more about Christian Science. I have been filled with such gratitude for the experience and each day am grateful for our Compass family.

Kendall (in hat) with Compass teens

As a guide, I’ve had the opportunity to witness teens come to an understanding and appreciation of CS through discussion and questioning. In our group, we have teens from various backgrounds when it comes to exposure and experiences within CS. We have a mix between lifelong Christian Scientists and those who are newer to the religion. This results in valuable conversations, as each participant provides a unique and individual perspective.

I’ve watched teens become more confident in their understanding by having to explain their ideas to others. I’ve seen teens solidify their understanding of some of the key concepts of CS through asking questions and being asked questions that cause them to think. Most importantly, I’ve celebrated as Compass participants have found total freedom from whatever was inhibiting them from being their true selves. Compass creates a safe and judgement-free zone for students to make friends, have good, clean fun, and be themselves.

Teens today face a lot of social, moral and personal questions – and they all can be answered through Christian Science. Compass provides an avenue and opportunity for them to discuss these questions in a safe place. Whether they’re wondering how to most effectively manage their time in school or are facing the pressure from peers to drink or smoke, Compass can help. Similar to the uplifting atmosphere at CS summer camps, Compass provides teens with a loving and supportive community throughout the school year. Our group has created solid friendships that the students can take with them throughout the rest of high school, college and life.

Registration for the 2017-2018 Compass program is open! Learn more.

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