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Wanderings – Observations of Campus Life at SJSU

Year in Review – Celebrating Christmas

The Rev. Deacon Kathey Crowe, SJSU Chaplain

  • Adopting a Family of Six
    • A mother and student of psychology at SJSU who has three semesters left to achieve her degree, didn’t have much left over for her children’s Christmas Wish List
    • What fun to be the giver of gifts during this season of Love.
  • Giving Trees at three of our church partners, St. Andrew’s, St. Luke’s, and Los Altos Presbyterian showered us with an outpouring of gift cards – these gift cards help the SJSU Cares case managers to stand in the gap over winter break assisting students with immediate basic needs.

Year in Review – Labyrinth Workshops Resume

The Rev. Deacon Kathey Crowe, SJSU Chaplain

  • Spiritual renewal through continuing partnership with Professor Monique Duphily, SJSU Health Science and Recreation, a partnership of nearly ten years together now combines with and a new partnership at the Unitarian Church who have opened  their sanctuary to us – labyrinth already in place
    • 160 students joined me last semester to experience the calming effect of the labyrinth
    • Students wrote many notes on the positive spiritual impact of walking meditation – such rewarding work.

Year in Review – Host Family Program

The Rev. Deacon Kathey Crowe, SJSU Chaplain

  • Jonanthan Oliveres receives his Mechanical Engineering Degree
    • The Rev. Ernest Cockrell opened his home to Jonathan and now enjoys a life long friendship with Jonathan and his family
    • Some scholarship dollars also helped Jonathan finish his degree
    • His vision is to start a manufacturing line in Mexico building parts to ship to the company that hired him here in the US – he’s an entrepreneur

Year in Review – The Anne Louise Heigho Scholarship

The Rev. Deacon Kathey Crowe, SJSU Chaplain

  • Partnering with St. Luke’s Los Gatos
    • Two recipients in 2023, Kenny Luu and Daniel Nguyen (shown with his parents), joined us at St. Luke’s for a celebratory luncheon and scholarship presentations
    • The Rev. Ricardo Avila, Jane Ogle, Derek Jetter, the Rev. Ernest Cockrell, Sarah Nunes (Anne Louise’s daughter) and the Rev. Deacon Kathey Crowe, Chaplain

Year in Review – A Hopeful Outlook in 2024

The Rev. Deacon Kathey Crowe, SJSU Chaplain

  • Emergency Community Response Team
    • This is a  formal action driven committee led by Catherine Voss-Plaxton, VP of Health, Wellness and Student Services
    • Members attend from SJSU Cares case managers, Housing, Financial Aid, Counseling Center, International Student Care, Immigration and DACA, Episcopal Chaplain and the Director of Hillel, Jewish Presence at SJSU
    • Our purpose is to formulate and implement strategic vision and action for student affordable housing, mental health and basic needs
    • The chaplain is also part of a sub-committee to review the processes at Spartan Pantry for optimum efficiency

Celebrations as Students Graduate!

A primary goal of this ministry is to assist students with the tools and support to graduate from SJSU.  Here is a picture of a celebratory dinner with a host family as one of our students graduates and goes out on her own!

Our Student Grad!

Our Host Families

The Canterbury Bridge is blessed to partner with home owners in the neighborhoods surrounding the urban centered campus at San Jose State University.  These host families invite students into their homes and lives by providing a room at no cost to the student.  The arrangement has been a wonderful success story as students find new inspiration and support from more senior mentors as well as the students’ opportunity to be supportive of the host family in exchange for their hospitality


San Jose State students rely on campus pantry as food insecurity grows

As students return to San Jose State University after a year of distance learning, many are relying on the campus food pantry for groceries. Click here for the details.

Photo by Stephanie Lam

Source: Stephanie Lam, San Jose Spotlight, 2021 AUG 20

Organizing for Change


Last week was intense! Earning four units of continuing education in Community Organizing at CDSP (Church Divinity School of the Pacific), I sat at the feet of some pretty powerful community organizers – people whose training and organizing methods were used by President Obama when he was still a community organizer himself in Chicago.  It may not be possible to summarize 10 hours a day for five days into one blog, but if I could use a couple of thoughts in attempt to summarize,  I would borrow from Dr. Stephen Covey’s work, The Seven Basic Habits of Highly Effective People– “begin with the end in mind” and “seek first to understand”.

Like most endeavors that are effective, relationships built and sustained are the hub.  I  know I am not the only one who wants to do ministry and go into community action with people that have our back, people we know we can trust when the going gets tough – a band of  brothers and sisters.  Jesus, who in my opinion was the most effective of all people who roamed our earth when it comes to relationship building, knew how to select and call a core group of followers.  These men and women literally followed Him to the cross.  Few of us need reminding that His ministry was about social change, teaching effective living  and healing the wounds of the poor and the marginalized.

Sitting in my study today at Grace Baptist Church across the street from the campus, I am beginning with the end in mind thinking about how to reach out to those young people who need to know that they are Beloved.  We reach out with no strings attached, nothing to sign up for, no commitments except to receive a blessing and maybe join us in building a sustaining community of friends.

As I begin the Spring Semester, I am blessed to have a wonderful student intern, A’Lester Allen, a great board of trustees who serve the Canterbury Foundation and the men, women and congregations of the Episcopal Church who donate to the ministry of building relationships with people of all faiths and belief systems.  In the words of Margaret Mead, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful citizens can change the world.  Indeed it’s the only thing that ever has.”

Riding the Wave



Life is full of change.  Sounds like a “no brainer” remark – if any one is reading this blog, I can almost hear you saying, “Of course life is full of change!” and I agree but would add that to live life with any kind of peace and contentment, one needs to accept the changes life throws our way by learning to ride the wave of change and make the transition from an ending to a new beginning.

I will admit that I almost fell off my surf board  last Thursday.  One of the center pieces of our ministry on campus has been the weekly chapel at Spartan Memorial.   It is a beautiful and peaceful space until invaded by jack hammers and heavy equipment noises – no longer a place of contemplative quiet and prayer.  The construction necessary for the building seismic upgrade has made prayer and quiet most difficult, even impossible.  I was under the wave at first until I picked myself up and got back on my surf board.  The question that got me back in action was, “What are the alternatives?”  That question  led me on a wonderful exploration.  I visited the Mosaic module where the graduate student welcomed me warmly and said, “Yes, we invite groups to pray here”  I also learned something about the wonderful programs they offer.  I hope you will check them out! .  Then I stopped by the Spartan Shops and bought Gold Point Cards for the Prize Wheel I will use at the recruiting table each in the Student Union.  Take a spin and win a prize – first you have to answer a Bible question!  It may sound corny but it may be a way to get people involved in conversation and invite them to chapel on Thursday’s.

Finally I stopped by the International House.  What an elegant residence for both US and foreign students.  Once again I was warmly greeted by the director and assistant director and then one of the resident students gave me a great tour.  We talked about the possibilities of working together to do service work to help alleviate the poverty that is so evident on the streets around the campus.

The wave of change can either send one to the bottom or lift us up to new possibilities.  I pray we all learn to ride the wave of change to a new beginning.