Youth Ministry Vision
St. Francis Xavier Parish
Our Vision for Youth Ministry
Here at St. Francis Xavier Parish, we are excited about our ministry to our high school age parishioners. This ministry is facilitated through the efforts of many people. Not only parents, but many adults in the community who interact with youth have an impact on the growth and development of teens, particularly in the area of Christian values. The ministry that takes place here at St. Francis Xavier Parish provides opportunities for our youth to develop relationships with adults of many kinds in the context of youth and parish. Out of these relationships, we envision the possibility of faith development, community building, mentoring, and of course, fun. The Quest program is the core of our ministry to youth. However, we offer a variety of youth opportunities to all high school teens, including service projects, parish ministries, the Church League sports programs, and the annual Parish Mission Trip
Final Confirmation Preparation/ Freshman Year
High school students who wish to be confirmed are invited to participate in the Quest Confirmation Program during the months of September through April of their freshman year. Those seeking Confirmation are asked to participate in several aspects of preparation for this important Sacrament. These aspects are:
· Regular Participation in Sunday Eucharist
· Service Opportunities
· Quest Speaker Events
· Participation in Lenten Teen Reconciliation Service
The elements listed above are provided for the candidate’s benefit and growth in faith. They are not meant to be an obligation that places heavy burdens on a candidate. Rather, these opportunities hopefully will facilitate a candidate’s sense of faith and belonging to the Catholic faith community. This is a process of growth and maturation. And, it takes time. Each high school student reacts uniquely to this type of preparation program. For some, it is possible to enter into this process throughout the course of their freshman year of high school. For others, it may take more time for the process to take place. The program is open to high school students of all ages. In this way, a freshman may choose to do simply a portion of the program and continue with the remaining portions of the program in a subsequent year of their high school years. For example, if a candidate does not presently attend Mass on a regular basis, he/she may want to make that a priority in their life at this time and focus engaging in the remaining elements of service and QUEST Small Group meetings in their sophomore, junior, and/or senior year. This allows the additional time that some teens may need in order to fully prepare for this Sacrament.
The most important portion of the program is the one just mentioned, weekly participation in Sunday Eucharist (Mass). This is a basic foundation of practicing Catholicism. The celebration of the Sacrament of Confirmation only makes sense for a Catholic who is fully aware of the meaning of Catholicism itself, which includes participating in Sunday Eucharist (Mass).
Candidates who have completed these dimensions of the preparation process stated above will be asked to formally make an application for the celebration of the Sacrament of Confirmation. This formal application occurs in March, in the weeks prior to Confirmation. Those unable to fulfill the requirements are invited to meet with the pastor or his representative.
Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors continue to engage in service opportunities and participate in Quest Small Groups and speaker events. In addition, all high school teens are encouraged to actively participate in all ministries and attend the 5:00 pm Sunday Mass and other parish Masses.