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Cherith Campbell


October 24, 2012

The one where we live with ‘brothers.’ (monks)

October 24, 2012 | By | No Comments

We just got back from Taize, France on Monday and it was quite an experience. We stayed in a monastic community where we lived in a community of brothers. A brother resembles a monk but just isn’t catholic. They have dedicated their lives to celibacy and to God. Taize is a community that is geared toward youth and they have hundreds and even thousands come to live in the community for a period of time.

We had prayer services three times a day. Before breakfast, before lunch, and then after dinner. The prayer services are very unique. Everyone sits on the floor and the whole service consist of singing chants, scripture reading, and silence. The brothers sit in the center area of the chapel building. It was very interesting to see the ways that they worshiped and the positions that they took. – bowing.

All of us were assigned work places in order to participate and give back to the community that we all lived in together. My group tore down these massive tents that people stayed in when they go there. It was such a specific task to tear down and fold everything and then put it away. Our ‘responsible’ or team leader was Pawel (25) and he was from Poland but had decided to volunteer in Taize for a year. Julian (19) was also another permanent (volunteer/worker) and he was German. He has until Christmas to work in Taize and then he will go to the United States to work in national parks out of Arizona. They were so nice and amazing to get to know.

Every morning we would partake in communion and every weekend they celebrate Easter. On Saturday we had a candle lighting service which was really cool to be apart of. These kids would light their candles and pass it along to the brothers who then passed it to us. Once you had the light you were to pass it to someone who did not.

The week we spend there was definitely a time to remember. We met people from around the world, learned the way of a monastic community, and really experienced God in a very different and interesting way.

Learn something new: Rubbing noses: the purpose/meaning of this cultural action isn’t to ‘rub noses.’ It is actually the idea of them getting close enough to breathe in the breath of the other person. It is an action of intimacy.

Cherith Campbell


October 16, 2012

The one where the hills come alive with the sound of music!

October 16, 2012 | By | No Comments

This past weekend was my first personal trip of the semester. And I loved it. Hannah Swearengin, Hayley Pankratz, Erin Knocke, and I got up super early to catch a bus, then a train, then another train, and then finally hours later arrived in Salzburg, Austria. The train ride there was beautiful. The scenery that we traveled through was incredible. After we arrived we wandered around for awhile until eventually finding our hostel. Yes we stayed in a youth hostel. And yes it was awesome.

The next day we went to multiple museums such as Mozart’s birthplace and his residence. We also did some shopping through Old Town and along the river as well. We ate a cafe, enjoyed one of Salzburg’s original apfelstrudel (apple strudel). Delicious. That night we got in late and hung out in the lounge area at the hostel and we met other travelers that were our age. That was so cool. We ended up getting to know three guys in particular pretty well. Darcey, Will, and Max were about our age and they were on a one and a half journey around Europe before going back to London where they worked for some outdoor recreation place. Darcey and Will were actually from Australia and Max from Germany but they all met at this place where they had to decided to work at until moving on to college or going home. They were a blast.

The third day that we were there we went on the Sound of Music Tour. That was so much fun. We got to see where the movie was filmed and where all the scenes took place. For example, we saw the house that was used, the gazebo, the lake, the path Maria skipped down, the church where the wedding took place, the Abbey, and many other places. We got to hear interesting facts and behind the scene stories from the movie and about the actors. For the way home we got a train, rode it for multiple hours, got off and on another train, rode it for an hour, then finally got home…uh home?…wow how crazy is that for me to say home and mean Switzerland. So cool. Yet I do know where my real home is. (that’s for my mom) :)

Well first personal trip done and a success. I had such a great time with the girls that were with me and we made so many amazing memories. Tomorrow we leave for Taize, France so get ready for that next!

Learn some new things today:

  • Mirabell means beautiful, lovely, wondrous in Italian. And the Mirabell Gardens in Salzburg were used in the Sound of Music.
  • Salzburg means ‘salt castle.’
  • In the Middle Ages salt was called the white gold.
  • A dirndl (landhausmode) is the traditional dress for women worn especially in Germany, Austria, Bavaria, South Tyrol, and Liechtenstein. Based on the historical costume of the Alpine peasants. Where the bow is tied around her waste shows status: Middle front- still a young girl. Left front- single/available. Right front- married. Back- widowed.
  • The edelweiss is the flower of Austria. It grows up in the mountains and can be very hard to get to. In the old days if a young man wanted to show his love and valor he would hike up and pick an edelweiss for his girl.
  • Europeans wear their engagement rings on the left hand and then they switch it to their right hand when they get married. And guys wear engagement rings as well.



Cherith Campbell


October 10, 2012

The one where we go hiking across the SWISS ALPS.

October 10, 2012 | By | One Comment

We went hiking through the Swiss Alps for our PE class….how sick is that.–yeah pretty sick right?! This was most definitely one of the most amazing experiences I have ever had. We road trains to Stoos and then had to ride cable cars and then ski lifts (yes ski lifts) to the top of these massive mountains! It was the most breath-taking place I have ever been in my life. No doubt. The pictures that we have do not come close to its beauty. It is an experience that you have to actually be there to comprehend the magnificence.

We saw the land where Switzerland originated and that was so neat to learn about. The hike that we did was called The Blade. It got this name of its drop off slopes on both sides of the path. We hiked across the Swiss Alps on a trail called The Blade that was only about three feet wide. And yes- that is incredibly cool.  The hike was three hours long and I wanted it to never end. A small group of us have already discussed going back and doing it again on a free day. WAIT- did I just say that in my free time I’m going to go hiking through the Swiss Alps? Why yes I sure did. :)

This experience has been so life changing and I cannot wait to see what it will bring in the next two months!

Learn something new today:  The spiral ramps in castles or structures go clockwise for fighting purposes. It gives the native the advantage as they fight because it gives them bigger space for the hand and sword. While the enemy coming up has the opposite smaller space and the disadvantage.

Cherith Campbell


October 2, 2012

The one where we walk with sticks.

October 2, 2012 | By | 2 Comments

This past week has definitely been my favorite! Guess why– it was PE week! Brad King and his wife came over from MNU and got to spend time with us in Paris as well as play some super fun games and do interesting activities. We played badminton which was so much fun! (Ty and I dominated-just sayin) Then we go to rock climbing and high wires/ropes courses. Yesterday we played disc golf and ultimate frisbee. After the class session was over there were six of us that wanted to keep playing and our game got pretty intense. Lauren, Ty, and I won!

Today for our activity we learned the art of Nordic walking. We had a lady that we knew from our village come and teach us the right way to do it and give us insight on the advantages that the Nordic technique has over just normal walking without sticks. We were all a little skeptical at first–I mean really..walking with much different or beneficial could that be? But surprisingly a few of us picked up on it really well and loved it! We are looking forward to hopefully getting a set of walking sticks and doing it when we get back to the states.

Nordic walking became first known around 1930’s but it did not get popular in the area here until about 15-20 years ago. After using the sticks and then going to regular walking you can really tell what the sticks actually do. When properly Nordic walking you use 80% or more of the muscles in your body! And the amount of calories you burn is outrageous.

We have had such an amazing week with Brad and Deb and we wish that they didn’t have to leave. But the time that we have had has been incredible. Tomorrow is our last PE session and it will be 12 hour day of traveling and hiking through the ALPS! We start bright and early at 7 to catch the train. Should be a truly insane experience! CANNOT WAIT.

Learn something new today: The pulpit in the church was pushed to the side because the center of the faith was the communion-table of Christ. But then when Sola Scriptura came about the pulpit was put in the middle and the altars (the table for communion) was pushed to the sides because the scripture (God’s Word) became the center of the faith.

Cherith Campbell


September 26, 2012

The one where it all begins.

September 26, 2012 | By | No Comments

Hey my name is Cherith and I live in Busingen, Germany/Switzerland. (well for the next three months) I am at the European Nazarene College with a handfull of other students from MNU that came as well. I have been here for two weeks now and have traveled through four countries and have stayed in three already! Our first trip was to Munich, Germany to visit Dachau, which is a concentration camp there. The experience there was unreal. I just got back from PARIS  and it was the most amazing trip I have ever been on! I visited Sacre Coeur, Arc de Triumph, Notre Dame, The Eiffel Tower, Opera Garnier (the Opera House), plus many others. Everywhere you looked there was beautiful  buildings, architecture, monuments, statues, etc. We learned the history of the cathedrals and sites as well as shopped among the street vendors and side stores. I had the best Creme Brulee  ever at a restaurant called Chez Clement- I seriously wanted it to be a bottomless bowl! So far it has been such a crazy, unique, and wonderful experience and I am so excited for what is still to come!

*Follow me on this amazing journey as I sing and pray and learn and eat and shop my way across Europe. :)

Learn something new today:  Feudal Lord Story (The reason for Busingen being German owned but in the country of Switzerland)– Austria was the power and owned everything a long time ago. Switzerland started buying the land from Austria but then the Swiss stole the Feudal Lord (of Busingen) that lived across from where I live. They took him and kept him in Schaffhausen, Switzerland. From then on Austria forbid Switzerland to buy the land of Busingen. It is said that the village town/land of Busingen is to be a constant annoyance to Switzerland that they cannot ever have it.