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Service Project for a Confirmation Class

In my years of ministry to young people in the Catholic Church, I have found that one of the most challenged ministries for young Catholics is Confirmation Prep. It is unfortunate that many young people start their journey in Confirmation class without a basic knowledge of what we believe in and a bias against what they are going to learn. This is really heart breaking to see. Yet, thanks be to God for the many people of good will that believe they can make a difference in the life of these young people and volunteer their time and talent so they can bring them closer to our Lord and His immense love for us. These amazing volunteers are the face, heart, and voice of not only the Catholic Church, but of our Lord Jesus Christ who calls us to a better more fully life. Thank you for your dedication and love.


We are tasked to teach the young Church what it means to be full members of the Body of Christ, these years will become crucial in their faith journey. Therefore, the importance of allowing them to discover the meaning of service and the responsibility to share God’s love to the world through their actions towards others. I have found that many Confirmation programs focus on the young people serving at Mass or inviting them into leadership positions in the parish or even to consider being members of a ministry. Yet, the reality is that leadership is fostered and grown. We don’t all become leaders of a ministry and not all of us have the needed gifts to be part of the Liturgical ministries. Don’t get me wrong, Mass is our obligation, and our young Church needs to learn that if they can, they need to share their gifts in one of these ministries or become part of the Parish’s ministries. The invitation needs to be made so as not to sound we just want to perpetuate the Parish, but as a responsibility as Baptized members of the community.


Our Baptism calls us to give witness of our faith outside of the walls of the Parish.

Because of our Baptism we are also called to give witness of our faith outside of the walls of the Parish. To live the Gospel and its values boldly and not be afraid. To be Christ like, love other’s as we would have them love me. To be a disciple of Jesus in a world many times plagued by selfishness. Jesus told his disciples: “This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” Jn 13, 35. Pope Francis says in the DoCat that charity can be thought, that not everyone is born with empathy, yet empathy can be learn when modeled; and this is a challenge for many of our Confirmation teachers. How can we plan a service project that can make an impact in the faith journey of our young Church.

“This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” Jn 13, 35.

These are some of the things I have learned:


  1. Know your students. Ask, observe, determine what their gifts are. If they like to draw, if they are good at reading out loud, would they like to build something? Collect items? Ask them what it is that they consider their greatest gift. This is a hard question, but you can ask in different ways. Do you consider yourself cheerful, passionate about the environment or another cause, do you love children?

  2. Know your boundaries. Meet with the Director of the program to see what the boundaries for you are to plan a service project. Can you invite someone from an organization to talk to your teens? Can your teens ask for items outside of Mass? Can they go and deliver or perform a service outside of Mass?

  3. Plan the service project. If you can serve an agency outside of the parish, look for one that matches your classes’ gifts and talents. It can be as simple as making cards for a nursing home or complicated as collecting something specific for a charity. If you are going to do something 1. inside your parish community, it can be sending cards or small plants to homebound people or helping with your parish pantry in some specific way. The service must match the gifts of your class. Maybe they are not ready for something big, and a simple act of mercy can be much more profound than a very complicated service project. Make sure you publish it in your parish bulleting and share it in your social networks as a sign of hope of what young people are doing.

  4. Pray for the outcome of your service project. Do this before, during and after, so it can impact the faith life of your students and they can grow in charity. You can even ask to be added to the intentions of the Mass.

  5. Evaluate. Create a resource so young people can meditate on how they heard God’s voice in the service they performed. Invite them to write down some questions they might have after the service or if they would like to perform another act of charity.


Charity is learned, it requires us to plan and execute service projects that can truly help young people learn about their own giftedness and how they can bring hope to others and share God’s love.


 
 

Let us Pray:

I invite you to put yourself in a spirit of Prayer. . Breathe and imagine that you are before the Lord. Ask him what he wants from you, where he wants you to go to witness his love. Ask him what are the miracles he wants to carry out through you. Offer yourself your fears and uncertainties and tell him with an open heart what troubles you. Tell him here I am Lord to do your will, here I am Lord to do your will. Listen to this song by Luke Spehar- All Is Gift

Here I am Lord to do your will

Join me in praying this prayer of Spiritual Communion: At Your feet, O my Jesus, I prostrate myself and I offer You repentance of my contrite heart, which is humbled in its nothingness and in Your holy presence. I adore You in the Sacrament of Your love, the ineffable Eucharist. I desire to receive You into the poor dwelling that my heart offers you. While waiting for the happiness of sacramental communion, I wish to possess You in spirit. Come to me, O Jesus, since I, for my part, am coming to You! May Your love embrace my whole being in life and in death. I believe in You, I hope in You, I love You. Amen.



You can pray an Our Father and a Hail Mary slowly breathing between sentences.

Finish by asking for the needs of your family, your friends. For the Holy Father and his intention for the month of September: so "we all will make courageous choices, the choices necessary for a simple and environmentally sustainable lifestyle, taking inspiration from our young people who are resolutely committed to this".:

Pray for Bishops, priests, men and women religious. So that the Lord will fill you with joy. We end by asking Our Lady, a model of charity, to cover us with her mantle and pray for us so that we may be generous; and through the intercession of our patron saints: Saint Gema Galgani, Saint Joselito, Blessed Chiara Badano and Blessed Carlo Acutis.

Sacred Heart of Jesus, I trust in You. Amen.

 

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