Friday, May 13, 2016

MUSIC COORDINATOR: JOHN OCAMPO

Hi everyone!

I’m John and currently the outgoing Music Coordinator for COSDU. I have been blessed with an opportunity to be able to partake this role and be able to use my passion in music as a form of service to glorify our Lord. I was elected last year through our Annual General Meeting (AGM), whilst not physically being present during the said event (so for those who wants to run, but can’t make it to the meeting, it is possible to do so). I expressed my desire to contribute as the Music Coordinator through a letter that was read in my behalf during the meeting. That desire is to be able to make God’s presence more and more perceivable through Worship and mass songs. Based on a personal experience, I would profess to have been able to be in the presence of the Lord, and this profound occurrence is something that I want other people to experience as well, as many times as possible. As for the specific role, worship is probably one of the most important thing that a Music Coordinator should be concentrating about, but there are also other things that role is entrusted with like:

  • Awareness for musically inclined brothers and sisters
  • Discernment for worship leaders
  • Helping out and working with the Liturgical Coordinator regarding mass songs
  • Safekeeping and accounting musical assets
  • Assessment of what COSDU needs in terms of musical equipment
  • Production of worship lyrics slides

*A misconception on what skill a Music Coordinator should have is assuming that he or she needs to be musically inclined. This is not a requirement to be able to be one, and a person can successfully fulfill the said role whether or not he or she is musically inclined.

As for the whole experience as a whole, being a Music Coordinator is a really fulfilling role. Not only you get to be inspired to be able to work with such talented people, but also witness that God is working in each and every one of us, through our talents, through our efforts and just through the time that we offer up to him to Glorify his name. It helped me grow closer to Christ through the people I work with, seeing small images of Him through them. And hey, it’s music, good music is always enjoyable.For those who are interested, I urge you to open your hearts for the calling, remember the times when you listen to a song or be part of a worship, and you heard this one line from the song that made you fall in love deeper with Christ, don’t you want to experience that again? And don’t you want to help God to bring that experience to everyone else?

For me, that line was:

“You came from heaven to earth, to show the way. From the earth to the cross, My debt to pay”

- Lord I Lift Your Name on High, by MercyMe


Will be praying for your discernment,
John

Thursday, May 12, 2016

President: Jaz Ocampo & Celina Dayrit

Hi there!


I am Jaz, and I have been the president of COSDU from May 2015 to March. 

It was only 2 months being in the COSDU family that I was nominated to become president last year. I was a baby COSDUan, fresh to Melbourne and a first year undergraduate student. As you can imagine, it was quite shocking to be nominated! It was so unexpected, I didn’t even know everybody’s names yet, so how will I “lead" these people?! But in those critical moments after being nominated, I thought of Mary and her resounding yes. So, LOL I said yes too, despite all the many reasons of saying no. Looking back, I see how cheeky God has done that in my life, and how much blessing He has poured to me because of that yes.



Me during AGM 2015


It has definitely been fun, difficult, fruitful and amazing. I met lifelong friends, inspiring people, have gone to new horizons because of this role. I am writing now to you, future president, to share what I have learnt in my time of being one.

----

In a few words, a president has to be a Melbuni student, and has to do the following for two semesters, as per the constitution:


Take care of each ministry in COSDU 
 Oversee and ensure the overall smooth running of COSDU 
 Keep the Spiritual Directors informed of COSDU’s wellbeing 
 Supervise and delegate tasks to committee members 
 Chair and prepare AGM 
 Call and chair committee meetings 
 Liaise with The Archdiocese 
 Attend AGM and other necessary training conducted by UMSU 

Those are things that the president has to DO, but there's three things, if you ask me, that a president has to BE.

HUMBLE

First of all, being president in COSDU is distinctly different and quite ironic compared to other ‘clubs', because the REAL PRESIDENT of COSDU is CHRIST. That is not to disregard the administrative roles and the authority that we have as the elected, but being a president is a humbling experience, in the truest sense of the word.
“What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants, through whom you came to believe—as the Lord has assigned to each his task. I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.” 
1 Corinthians 3:5-7

I’m quite a perfectionist, but through being president I’ve learnt that there will always be mistakes in the decisions I make and with working with the committee and that is okay! The only bad mistakes are the ones I didn’t learn from. The mistakes made me realise over and over again that God is in control, and always has been in control. It also made me realise that I am part of a great team. We grew together, cried, laughed, stayed late together, and pulled through rough and tough times together. They continually inspired me to strive for the best, and I know I can trust them! (If youre reading this Team 56, you’re the best).

 
Team 56 Committee Retreat @ Phillip Island

VISIONARY

Without a unifying vision, the committee and COSDU as a whole will feel disoriented and without direction. It is entrusted to the president to listen to everyone’s needs and from there, set the vision for the 2 semesters, and make sure that everyone is on board with this vision as a committee. It will be the basis of all the major decisions and often the solution to dilemmas.

With the vision comes the effort to make it happen - The president has to look ahead. With the tight timeline of students, organising ahead of time is the only way to gather 9 other people in one place at one time (committee meetings), and allow for sufficient time to work on things.


PRAYERFUL

Above all, a president has to spend time being nourished, before attempting to nourish the souls of others! As I said before, the president of COSDU is Christ, so how else can we know what His will is, but by asking Him ourselves?

found personally that I clinged to God more through this role. Being the president made me grow in my relationship with Christ, by praying for COSDU, praying for my committee, the weekly sessions, just made me pray unceasingly. Legit. 

Prayer reminded me to focus on people and not on the programs and reminded me that this is what COSDU is: a family that prays together.

---

You might be thinking, Wow this is a tough job, I dont think I am humble, prayerful nor a visionary, nor can I handle all those responsibilities. I cant do it. Then youre right, but only half right. It is impossible in human efforts, but with God all things are possible :D

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10

I encourage you to discern this role!

I am praying for you!

Jaz


---





Hi everyone!

My name's Celina and I'm the outgoing President of COSDU. When we had our SGM a few months ago, I came uncertain and tethered on the edge of doubt because oh my goodness, do I really intend to run for President? Days before SGM, people were already asking me if I was running and yet every single time I replied it was always a 'no' or an 'I don't know'. My words were coated with such doubt and scepticism and honestly? Until now I feel like I'm still in a boat that's close to sinking. However, I'm comforted by the fact that I have a passionate crew (the rest of the committee) with me and a lighthouse (God) who I know will never leave me, and will always provide support and guidance as I make my way home.

Should you be elected President, the next few months will be nothing short of terrifying. It's a journey which will require a lot of your being and will have lots of demands. It may or may not take a toll on your body and perhaps even your spiritual life. But trust me when I tell you that the fruits of this service go beyond what the position entails. I've had days when I'm just like "Lord, why me?" being said with such angst but on other days when I ask the same question with such awe. Because truly Lord, "why me?". Honestly, I believe that we're all worthy to be in this role; it's just a matter of whether we say yes to His call. Jaz already discussed how the President has to be humble, prayerful and a visionary. Her words cannot ring any more true as truly, that's how the President should be. To have humility when all we want to do is be proud; to be pray always when all we want to do is to turn away from God; and to envision and to lead.

I think that the number one reason why many are so reluctant to be the President is because they're scared of the responsibilities. I remember attending 2015's AGM and being struck by the words "If you're scared, that's all the more reason why you should say yes." Until now, it still is a constant reminder that God's plan for me is always far greater than what I have planned for myself. When I first said yes, I was truly so scared. However, God has constantly affirming me that He will never abandon me in this service. And I'm extremely certain that God will do the same for you. So, be both fearful and fearless because God will never, ever forsake you.

There will undoubtedly late nights and early mornings -  sleepless dawns and busy afternoons. You'll have to manage a lot of things: such as committee meetings, sessions and other club activities such as Night Market and Festival of Nations. You'll have to check how the other members are doing as well as liase with the chaplains. You'll have to sometimes think of others before thinking about yourself. Most of all you'll have to be a servant-leader and to always know the difference between having a heart for service or a heart full of pride.

I don't have much to say that Jaz hasn't covered (Hehehe, thanks Jaz). But from the bottom of my heart, I truly encourage you to think of this role and not merely disregard it because of fear and anxiety. It's truly a role that has filled with so much humility and awe in God's plans. It excites me just knowing that you too, can experience this. So, open up your heart and if at the end of the day, you're still afraid I urge you to just pray and put your trust in God. Don't worry, He's always listening. (:

Love always,
Celina



Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Treasurer: Johan Singana & Christine Tee



Hello lovely people (YES, YOU!!!)



It has come to that time of the year again when assignments and mid-sems come to a hectic end (hopefully!) and when the committee steps down after one year of serving together.

Even as I type this, I can’t fully digest that one year has gone by just like that! One whole year of events, sessions and lots of food! In treasurer terms, this means one whole year of grants, budgeting and grants!

Going into AGM 2015, I sat in my seat, smiling at all the nominations of people around me, putting my hand up to second nominations and nudging people to being open to roles! Saying this, by no means was I personally open to taking on a role again, after being COSDU’s treasurer for the 2014/2015 term!

I was going to take a break from serving, I told myself.
I was going to focus on my studies and spend more time on friends, I told myself.
I was going to have some Friday nights where I could just go out, I told myself.


Notice a common theme in these statements I was making in my head?
Firstly, it was all “I” centric and secondly, where was my heart for God in this decision? I was so consumed by my own abilities and doubts that I didn’t allow space for God in my decision.

In the end, I was so glad that I realised this during AGM and had a paradigm shift, where instead of focusing on me, me, me, I was going to be open to this decision being “God and me”. After all, He had shown me so much of His love by serving in the committee in 2015/2016 already, what more was He going to do in 2015/16? And this time, not just for me and my own faith, but for the faith of COSDU.

Now, looking back on that decision last year, I laugh because God is just so funny and great. He doesn’t give up on you and He does know that you alone are not capable based on your own human capabilities, but that’s why He stands by you as you serve.

I can’t even begin to list the things I’ve learned by bein in this committee, from my faith to just working in a team to just being inspired by my amazing fellow comm members :')


BUT HEY, let's get down to the serious stuff for a bit:


The job description of the treasurer pretty much covers all money-related aspects!

1) Keeping track of COSDU’s accounts
· Noting down cash inflows and outflows
· In a book or excel spreadsheet, whichever suits you best.

2) Applying for grants
· Grants can be applied for functions and asset purchasing from UMSU
· The treasurer will need to ensure grant applications, application of payments and other necessary documents are submitted on time online.

3) Reimbursements
· Reimbursing those who have spent on behalf of COSDU, once they’ve handed you the receipt.
· Can be done easily now with online bank transfers!

4) Collection of money
· Collect money whenever necessary e.g. at eat-in dinners, mass donations, o-week booth


5) Attend training by UMSU
· Attend short training sessions by UMSU in which they inform you about how to be the best treasurer for your club!

6) Budgeting
· Coming up with budgets for future events with the committee

7) Prepare Treasurer’s Report
· This is the last thing the treasurer would need to do at AGM!


All in all, yes, it does takecommitment and it does take hard work, but being in the committee isn't something that will last a year and then fade away. It's an experience that will always stick with you, and that's something I think everyone should experience! :)

Open your hearts and be humble. God bless you all and the committee will be praying for everyone, so know that you already are covered in prayer!

Publicity Coordinator: Jehrome

I took the role of publicity because I thought I was a PR (public relations) guy back then and people actually thought of me that way. 
And I guess that's what the role really is about, reaching out to people and being that person that grips everyone together. 
It was the passion to spread love and hopefulness that got me into saying the precious "Yes, Lord". COSDU has been a wonderful keystone for my journey that it had filled a hole that is constantly searching. To manage the role, dealing with people is the main foundation (does it always have to be about people, Jehrome?) 
YES. What the people like in their newsfeed, what is visually attracting to them, what words do they colloquially use, people, people, people, disciples. You just have to know, if you dont..psshh you know, you Gen Y, you. There is always gonna be the anxiety and the force to reach out to people (shout out to my shytype girls and boys). 
And of course the anxiety of am I doing enough? A COSDU committee is an understanding and a "no worries" committee. Well, for me anyways. 
But it is a welcoming and an accepting space. I wouldnt have lasted a semester of serving without my 2015 sem2 committee. All it takes is the willingness to say Jesus is Love during O-WEEK. that itself is the edge of this responsibility, but the willingness is enough! That, or you just scream "FREE FOOD!!!" and quickly snatch a COSDU goodies bag, smile and give it to this person half-contemplating to walk away and half-contemplating slowing down their pace waiting for you to give the bag of goodies to them. 
Have fun, have a ball, you're gonna be just fine, you God-blessed soul! smile emoticon

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Liturgical Coordinator: Nicole Torres

                                        


Hey, everyone! My name is Nicole and I serve as the Liturgical Coordinator for COSDU!

My role as the Liturgical Coordinator of COSDU is one that closely deals with the heart of our Catholicism, because it deals with the Holy Eucharist, or the Mass. As the Liturgical Coordinator, my roles includes:

  • organising COSDU Masses
    • booking for a venue
    • getting a priest to celebrate the mass
    • setting up for mass
    • organising the Liturgical music for mass
    • making sure the Mass is pastoring the members
  • even working alongside the Sessions Coordinator for some sessions

So it really is all about Liturgy!

I know it might seem like there's a lot or it might seem complicated, but I started this role not knowing much about how the mass goes at all and all that and somehow it's already nearing the end of my term as Liturgical Coordinator and I'm proud to say I've made it. Hahaha :P 

It's been such a challenging ride but I know everything I did was for God and that was all that mattered. Not to mention I served with such a beautiful, amazing bunch of people that helped me with all the things I lacked on.They made everything so much fun and full of new things to learn (pangsai!).

If you're being called to serve in COSDU but don't know what role to run for, don't shy away from this role. You truly work closely with the physical Jesus (the bread and wine) and that's one of the greatest thing ever! It's not hard to get the hang of and I will be there always for whoever steps up to this role after me if they have any question or need any help at all. So make sure you pray about it and let the Lord lead you. :)

God bless and see you all at AGM! 

Vice President: Christabelle Cheah



HELLO THERE! 

My name is Belle and I’m currently Vice President and I’m hoping that perhaps YOU will be the next one since you’re reading this, which maybe then indicates that something about COSDU, or even the title of this post attracts you and that you’re interested? Muahahaha! Ok I’m just kidding. Wherever you are in life and however you feel about the upcoming AGM, let me just share a little something with you about what being Vice President is like. I tend to go on a bit of a tangent sometimes so please bear with me J

Being Vice, as outlined by the constitution (huhu let’s get the super formal things outta the way) in Clause 7aii, states that the role of a Vice President, who shall be a Melbourne University student for his/her full term is to

-         Support the President and the Committee
-         Responsible for fund raising and sponsorship together with Publicity Coordinator and Social Activities Coordinator
-         Resource Management
-         Attend necessary training conducted by UMSU


Before you start freaking out on how possibly daunting all that may sound and before thoughts like “Can I do this? I’m not holy enough. I haven’t been in COSDU long enough. I don’t know what to do or how to lead people. I am not capable” flood your mind, let me ask you one question.

Have you been touched by COSDU?


If your answer to that is a yes, you can do great great things because the love and joy that resonates off COSDU comes only from Christ and being Vice allows you the opportunity to be an instrument of this exact love and joy that you have experienced yourself! As Vice, you don’t have to be amazing at everything, neither do you have to be on the top of your game 24 hours, 7 days a week but it definitely calls for a willing heart to be ripped open, torn down, and built back up again. Being Vice, we call ourselves to be open to receiving Christ in ways we might not have ever felt before.

Personally, Vice was hard for me because I am a perfectionist and sometimes (actually most of the time) I really want things my way and choose not to want to see the bigger picture. However, being Vice calls you to work very closely not just with your President but also with your committee and ultimately, it is calling you to listen to the voice of God.
What do you think God is calling you to do? I wouldn’t say ‘stepping up’ to Vice, but maybe I will say ‘stepping down’ because stepping down to Vice invites us to humble ourselves, listen to His call and answer it. Yes, the road will not always be smooth sailing but pray about it, envision what you want COSDU to be and have good time management, which is something I learnt over my term and is also very important.

If you have a little something you want to give back, and you have a little nudge or feeling to want to serve and give back to COSDU, this may be it! You’ll have plenty of opportunities through planning orientations, night market, festival of nations, being organized and being disciplined to learn the many things that God has yet to show you. And before I forget, being in the committee in itself is SUCH a rewarding experience because the friendships and relationships formed amidst your term here with both comm and members might just be the ones you’ll be keeping for life. So please, if you have the faintest of callings, I urge you to pray about it and know that if you’ve any ANY questions whatsoever, I am always here for you J

With love,

Belle

Monday, May 09, 2016

Sessions Coordinator: Jessica Schmidt



Howdy!
So you are interested in what a session’s coordinator does..! Well, as session’s coordinator you are entrusted with all of the sessions that happen during each semester (apart from masses, and some other random ones).
Under clause 7(b)(ii) of the constitution, the Sessions Coordinator shall:
1)      Organise, coordinate, and execute all COSDU sessions.
2)      Research on proposed themes and liaise with the Spiritual Directors.
3)      Invite speakers to sessions and liaise with Liturgy Coordinator for appreciation gift.
4)      Liaise with the Vice President for resources and materials.
5)      Liaise with the Secretary for venue bookings and list of the semester’s sessions in advance.
6)      Liaise with the Music Coordinator for music as and when necessary.

This sounds like quite a big job, but really it’s not that big because of all the help and support you have available to you in the committee and in the archdiocese of Melbourne. You also are blessed with the job of choosing the topics for each week: finding speakers, or video programs, or Brazilian Jiu Jitsu masters, or anything you can think of to make each session communicate God’s love, grace and mercy!
This can be done through a combination of:
Deepening our knowledge of the Catholic Church (teachings on the faith)
Deepening in personal encounter with God (sharings, prayer, or worship)
Deepening our relationships with others!  (Yup, God is in those weirdos you’re surrounded by as well! ;)

In this role, you also work very closely with many other committee members to really shape what each COSDU night will be like. For example you could organise with your Music Coordinator for a song to be used in praise and worship or your Liturgy Coordinator to organise Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, or with Social Activities Coordinator to have some games.

Another part of your role is to organise and discuss with speakers to come to COSDU and share their wisdom. I found this one of the most fun parts of the job as you get to talk with experts from all walks of life: nuns, priests, international speakers, and professors – who all have a unique take on the faith. To make the most of this, it’s important to plan early!

Finally, with so much organising and planning about faith topics and the church, it is important that you consult regularly with the giver of all speakers and topics, and really the source of all goodness. That is, God! Having called you into this position, it is very important to ask Him what it is you must do for His beloved children. Also, He is the one who can turn all of your (and my) weaknesses into strengths and so trying to do it without Him….. Well let’s just say you might look like an idiot in front of a lot of people! (This I learned from experience…lel)

Taking up sessions, it was my hope that during my term it would be a year of spiritual growth, learning how to be fearless in our faith and loving disciples in the world. What a mission! However I quickly found that there was a lot to contend with in this role, not only did I need to think about the beliefs and opinions of my committee family, but also would have to cater for the different levels of faith in my extended COSDU family! Some people were praying daily whilst others had only just began to learn about Catholic teaching yet the Lord wanted everyone to come closer to Him. Throughout the year I found a lot of guidance and grace from both personal prayer (spending quality time with my main man, Jesus) and really entering into worship at COSDU sessions. Also, in speaking with the chaplains, I gained a lot of insight into how COSDU has grown over many years and what has been done in the past. My greatest source of encouragement came from seeing COSDUans apply what they heard or learnt in sessions in their faith, and really step into new levels of life and growth in their search for God.

As with any role in the committee, it takes courage to step up and say yes! So do not fear- in Him you have everything you need and more! And through loving others in this way He has things he wants to bless you and give to you too! Never forget that He is after your heart as much as the people you’re serving! 
God bless…

And may the force be with you J

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