Teen Apostles Core Team
What is a Core Team?
These people are the hands and feet of the Teen Apostles Youth Ministry Promote who devote themselves to witnessing Christ for the teens of our parish through relational ministry, facilitating small groups, events, prayer nights, and a multitude of service and social opportunities. Core members are the greatest gift to every youth minister and every youth ministry program! If you’re interested in becoming part of the Core Team, please see Ryan’s letter below.View Letter
What are my exact commitments?
Commitment to God: As a Core member at Saint Thomas the Apostle, your first and most important responsibility is to maintain a personal relationship with Jesus Christ through Prayer and the Sacraments. As mentors in the faith and representatives of the Catholic Church, you are called to actively study the teachings of the Church and pray for wisdom and obedience in seeking the Truth.
Commitment to Core: As a member of a unified team, you are encouraged to develop virtuous friendships with all of the members of our Core Team, knowing that the teens will model the relationship that they see and experience with the Core. Thus, you are called to commit yourself to compassion, patience, forgiveness, reconciliation, service, and charity.
As part of your commitment to the Core, you are asked to attend our pre-session team meetings from 5:30-6:15 PM every Sunday. These meetings consist of team prayer, updates, and a run-through of the youth meeting. Also, there will be monthly Core formation sessions that you are encouraged to attend.
Commitment to Teens: As a Core member you are encouraged to develop Christian relationships with high school teenagers. The purpose of the Teen Apostles meetings is to provide a safe environment for teens to explore their faith, grow in community, and fall more deeply in love with Jesus Christ. It is crucial that Core members give these nights the time and energy that the teens deserve.
As part of your commitment to the teens, you are asked to attend youth meetings every Sunday from 6:15-7:45 PM.
I am not sure I can fully commit. Can I still be part of the Core team?
Yes. We understand that you have busy lives (family, commitments to college, jobs, etc.) and it can be difficult to make a full-time commitment. As a general rule, however, the most powerful thing that you can offer the teens that we serve is the fruit of your vocation and prayer life.
Thus, there is great value in parishioners staying connected to the youth of the parish to serve as role models or prayer warriors, even if only part-time. Please contact Ryan Ayala to discuss your particular situation.
Check our some of the testimonies of our core members from Teen Apostles below!
A few hours each week I head to the Parish, circle up with the Core Team and the Youth Minister, go over the curriculum for this week, and pray for the night ahead. The rest of the Core Team and I proceed to greet and catch up with teens as they begin to arrive. The night continues on, and the Core Team engages in dialogue with students about the catechesis we’ve just heard, trying to dig a little deeper into what Scripture and the Church teaches us, and how we might see this in our own lives and experiences
Although this is a fair representation of what my experience has been on the Core Team over the last year or two, it certainly isn’t the valuable parts, or what keeps me serving. What might not be obvious to the casual observer about our nights of formation is the relationships, and blossoming young disciples behind it.
I have heard the highs and lows of each student’s week, be it getting second chair in orchestra, or acing a school exam. I have been awestruck by the acts of charity teens have done, from the thoughtful actions in their everyday lives, to volunteering at a non-profit. I have seen the beginning stages of examination, as they reconcile their world with the life that Our Lord presents to us. I have heard them ask the difficult questions that help guide them to Truth. At the end of the day I am grateful to have shared in the lives of these teens, and to help guide them into their call to vocation, and relationship with Christ.
-Alicia Gardner (Third Year on Core)
“When he listens to his conscience, the prudent man can hear God speaking.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church 1777). As Catholics, we know that this means it is our duty to form the moral conscience of the young, as well as to continue to seek a fully formed conscience throughout our adult lives. One of the reasons I am grateful to be a core member at the St. Thomas the Apostle Youth ministry program is that I can help develop the faith and conscience of the St. Thomas youth while building and strengthening my own. While engaging the students in faith formation I strive to be an example for them of a young adult who continues to learn and make his relationship with God a priority. Working with Ryan and the other core members has taught me the value of a church community in learning and growing in the faith, and in passing it on to our youth.
-Nathan Steier (Third Year on Core)