If you want to try out the serenity of a simpler life, then join InterVarsity Study Abroad for a weekend in Italy where you will step back in time in pursuit of a radically different vision for the future.
From atop this layered village, you can see a patchwork of fields and vineyards, speckled with other medieval cities on hilltops. Perhaps those too have winding streets, gurgling fountains, and surprise staircases shortcutting from one level to the next. But you're grateful you’re in this particular village, because there’s something deeper here than a breathtaking view to give you a new perspective.
As sunset turns the stone buildings a dusty rose and the church bells tell you it’s time to gather for dinner, the invitation to this kind of simplicity has already shifted something in you, and your soul is thirsty to pursue more of the same after you leave this place...
What is possible by the end of Journey Italy?
- You feel inspired and equipped to make countercultural choices regarding humility and simplicity, because you trust they will lead to greater freedom.
- You’ve learned spiritual practices and heard stories of Christian role models that make it feel possible to seek a rich inner life with God even in the modern world.
- Your devotion to Jesus flows from the experience of being profoundly loved by him; loving him back and loving others like he does now feels like freedom and not obligation.
- Your sense of connection with all created things leads you to join the chorus of creation in worship of God, your Creator.
- You’ll linger in Assisi where young Francis gave up his nobility and earthly possessions in order to love the poor and outcast. His radical act of faith inspired a tectonic shift in the mission of the Church 800 years ago, the effects of which are still felt today.
- You’ll explore how it’s possible to follow Jesus in the midst of wealth, power, and politics like St. Francis, St. Clare, and their monastic communities who lived at the heart of the Christian empire of their time.
- You’ll touch the cool stone of the caves where the Franciscan brothers would spend 40 days at a time in prayer, and marvel at how the caves feel somehow still warmed by the presence of God’s Spirit that has been welcomed there for centuries.
- You’ll debrief in Rome, the city where Paul was imprisoned and Peter was killed by the Roman Empire for subversively preaching the gospel. Yet, it’s also a city where the church eventually became its own powerful empire. This stark contrast to Assisi will help you prepare to take spiritual risks when you return home to the power structures and opposition there.
When is Journey Italy?
Student date: Fall 2022
Program begins with dinner and ends midday on the last day.
Where is it?
Program begins in Rome and ends in Assisi (2 hours train ride northeast of Rome).
When should I arrive?
Student should arrive before dinner on program start date.
How much does it cost to attend?
With the help of scholarships, the trip cost for study abroad students is $85. This does not include transportation to/from the start and end points of Journey Italy.
What is included?
Students: Journey Italy includes housing from first night through last morning. Meals are provided beginning with dinner.
What if I need to cancel?
The cost is non-refundable and non-transferable. Special circumstance: if a student tests positive for COVID-19 before departure, the cost of trip will be refunded with the exception of accommodation deposits (TBD).
What is housing like?
Expect housing accommodations to be a hostel or a small boutique hotel run by a monastic community.
Also, know in advance that space is a premium in European cities - everything is smaller: apartments, houses, hotels, and hostels. And, depending on pandemic conditions, these locations are subject to change.
What should I pack?
- Comfortable walking shoes
- Personal toiletries
- Pen/markers. A program journal is provided.
Which airport should I fly into?
Fly into the Rome airport. You can catch a bus to the city center (to Termini Station).
How can I get from the airport to the hostel/starting point?
Can I stay in Italy longer?
You are welcome to find a flight any time after the program ends, but you are also welcome to stay longer in Italy, either before or after Journey. You will need to book your own accommodations for any additional nights.
Where do I register?
Registration will open soon.
For all our Journeys, we will follow the required COVID-19 protocol for each respective country. Additionally, we are requiring participants to be fully vaccinated and have a negative test result within 72 hours of the trip to ensure the safety of the whole team.
Find the travel protocol for Italy from the U.S. embassy here. It’s important to note what suggestions they give, and what you need to do once you get there. For some countries, you’ll need to download a certain app and obtain a QR code that verifies your vaccination status.
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