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Defining Vocation, Work, and Christian Liberal Arts

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The words "vocation" and "work" are central to Opus's mission and philosophy. We've spent some time carefully defining what we mean when we use these terms.

Vocation

A calling to meaningful work in service to others.  Vocation is a theological and spiritual idea that has unfolded throughout the history of the church.  We can respond to God’s grace by cultivating lives of service to God and others.  It is this response of service the Church has considered to be the realm of vocation.  Diverse forms of work become vocations or dimensions of vocations when they are offered as service in response to God’s grace.

Work

Purposeful effort. Work comes in a dizzying array of forms: cultivating a friendship, voting your conscience, giving a eulogy, folding laundry, driving safely, baking a cake, designing a website, paving a road, etc.  When work is consistently aimed at self-centered purposes, it becomes something God never intended—people are made to work for the benefit of others.

Christian Liberal Arts

Education that frees students to understand, accept, cultivate, and practice their vocations in service to God and His world.  Students develop a coherent understanding of reality with God at the center, and greater clarity of their own opportunities to serve God’s purposes.