It has been a great year and we are a bit sorry to see it end for YIA. Luckily, we will start meetings for the 2018-2019 season in September.
But we need to tell you what we did these last couple of months! In March our meeting had a ‘secret’ agenda. We made a HUGE thank you card for Fr. Mike. We talked about it ahead of time and tried to list all the things he does for us, as a parish and as a youth group. There were LOTS of suggestions made, and since the card was so big we managed to get everyone to sign it. Then we had to keep this secret until our April meeting…. not easy!
Our April agenda was loaded. We were fortunate that some of the level 6 PREP kids could join us at this meeting; it gave them a chance to see what we do.
We assembled all the toiletries that the parish so generously donated and prepared to put them in bags for the residents of Valley Youth House (VYH).
Sean Mack of Valley Youth House spent some time with us before we did that. He explained a little about what it is like to be a young person there (children as young as 6 live there, at least temporarily). Understanding what life can be like for other kids, who do not have the family support that we have, helped us understand why it is necessary to keep them in our thoughts and prayers and to gather donations for them. Oh, and Mr. Mack advised us to go home and hug our parents, telling them a great big Thank You!
Fr. Mike stopped by just as we started to assemble the toiletries. We surprised him with the big card we had for him. And all the kids got a chance to sign it before he took it to the rectory.
Fr. Mike took a little time to talk with us about vocations. This was especially thought-provoking since Brandon just announced his acceptance into St. Charles Seminary. It’s not too early to consider the path our life will take, whether it is the priesthood, religious life, marriage, or the single life. Ms. Koob also reminded us that, as we get older, an organization like YIA will need leaders. Life has so many possibilities; we need to listen to God’s promptings and make our decisions carefully.
We helped load the 63 bags of toiletries into Mr. Mack’s car and went home with our parents.
Though our year had officially ended, we participated in one more parish activity a couple weeks later. On the weekend of May 5-6, members of YIA coordinated with the Evangelization Committee and the Knights of Columbus in our parish’s annual baby bottle campaign. Alison Dern and Lucas Benson spoke after the weekend’s Masses, explaining the campaign and how it benefits needy moms and babies; then we stood at the doors of the church handing out the bottles. The campaign was so successful that we ran out of bottles! This was also the first time that we got to wear our YIA vests! We look forward to more opportunities to work with other parish ministries in the future.
This has been a very good year and we look forward to the fall. Some of us will come back to YIA and others will go on to the High School Youth Group. No matter where we go, our experiences at Assumption BVM will stay with us.
Remember, YIA meets the 4th Monday of every month during the PREP season. Our meetings are from 6:15- 7:45 pm. We look forward to including any 7th or 8th grader, from any school, and we remind you to bring your friends! See you in September!