Youth Ministry at The Madeleine
Dear Parents and Families of The Madeleine,
As we head into the new school year there are some very exciting things happening with our youth group. The Madeleine and St. Charles have decided to merge our youth programs. Our youth live in a world where they are not confined by the boundaries created by their grandparents. The world that our youth are growing up in is a global community. It’s fast, it’s huge, and it brings with it exciting possibilities as well as new challenges for youth ministry. In order to adequately address the new challenges we need to be able to grab hold of the new possibilities. We need to break old modes, be creative, and re-imagine what is possible. Both parishes hold the same goal: to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the lives of young people. We know that each individual and each parish brings different gifts to the table. We firmly believe that together we will be stronger and better able to live out our mission.
We now have God Squad! At the beginning of last year St. Charles had as its goal to grow in numbers, we knew that we would need two age-specific groups within our youth program. By the Grace of the Spirit we were successful and in October we launched a group for 5th and 6th graders and it was amazing! The youth decided to name their group God Squad. As a Christian I have been constantly blown away with the enthusiasm for service and courage of spirit that these young people radiate. This year as we continue the transition process, God Squad will become a group for 5th, 6th, and 7th graders. Next year our plan is for God Squad to include 8th graders. This will give our program two equal sub groups, one for Junior High and one for High school. We have built into this year’s calendar time for these two groups to mix together and we have built in time for families to be included as well.
Youth Group and God Squad will meet at St. Charles. Our hope is for our programs to become much more than weekly meetings. We have designed a program that ties together weekly reflection, intergenerational time, fun activities, service, and leadership development in order to more fully equip our youth to become full and active participants in whatever church they come to us from.
Both of our groups will be taking trips this upcoming summer. We have nothing set in stone yet. Our Core Team is in the process of discernment and will be contacting families shortly with more information.
Finally, this year, in the spirit of re-imagining what is possible we are beginning an outreach team! If we are going to reach young people we know that we cannot simply ask them to come to us, we need to go out to them. The Outreach team will go to school ball games, theater events, malls, anywhere youth are gathering, to begin to form relationships and further our mission. This team is not assembled yet and we need your help. If you feel that the Spirit is calling you to this ministry please call me. Also if your child is involved in any extracurricular activities please provide us with their schedules. We aim not only to reach new youth but to support the youth with whom we already have relationships.
I want to say how blessed I feel to be able to be part of the faith development of each and every one of the youth that walk through our doors. Please keep a close eye on Friday Footnotes as well as the bulletin to learn more about myself and the program. I look forward to meeting new families. My door is always open and you all should feel free to call me with any questions, concerns, or ideas you have for the Youth Program. I ask that you keep our program in your prayers
Blessings and Solidarity
Pastoral Associate/ Youth Coordinator