Updated: Nov 26, 2021
by Norman Soto, Cap Corps DC
Half way through my senior year in college, I was confronted with the burning question of what I was going to do after I graduated. Should I go to graduate school? If so, in what, or should I look into a different career? These were several questions that I encountered constantly as I found myself pondering what was the next step in my life. Change, or the state of uncertainty, was frightening to me. One thing I knew is that I wanted to serve in some capacity. A close friend, knowing that I was interested in doing a year of service, helped me look at different programs online. Also knowing that I was attracted to a Franciscan spirituality, we stumbled across Cap Corps. It initially did not strike me as probable since I was on the other side of the country. It was not until I spoke with a Capuchin Friar in California, Fr. Hai Ho, OFM Cap. (Cap Corps Alum ‘03-’04), that I really did start to consider joining Cap Corps and where a new change started in my life. There is something about change and the uncertainty that comes along with it that brings discomfort.
Moving across the country would be an understatement of the change that has taken place in my life since the start of my Cap Corps year. One of the biggest changes that I have encountered has been the difference in “East Coast Culture” which is significantly different from “West Coast Culture.” From the beaches to the significantly different demographic difference, the East Coast has been a very big change for me. However, meeting new faces and experiencing the joy of living in the spirit of St. Francis, God has been abundantly gracious to me in these changes. The year has only begun, the change has only begun, but with prayer, a solid community, and Capuchin fraternity, it is precisely in these changes that I hope to grow.
Norman Soto is from Anaheim, California and graduated from the University of California Irvine. Norman is serving in Employment Services and the Food Program at the Spanish Catholic Center this year. Fr. Hai was a Cap Corps Volunteer in DC during the 2004-05 volunteer year and also served at the Spanish Catholic Center.