Dear WCACYM friends, family, & students of Summer Seminar,
It is my duty as Chairperson on behalf of Sister Maybelle de la Cruz to inform you that she has been called to another mission.
Things happened quite quickly, and she is now off back to the Philippines to visit with family and spend time with her community. After, she will in the new year begin a new mission in Sicily, Italy! She has been called to help run a retreat house and reach out to the young people there.
Obviously, this came as a great surprise to us and we are filled with mixed emotions. Myself, I am devastated at losing such a gift to WCACYM and to Youth Ministry in my local Diocese of Saskatoon. But Sister's impact has reached all of Western Canada. Quickly thought my heart filled with gratitude and eyes filled with tears. I will remember my meeting with her discussing her move for many years to come. My heart simply burst in thanksgiving for who she is and what she did and sorrow for no longer being able to collaborate with her. But she reminded me that obedience and faithfulness to the call of God is primary. Sister wanted me to let you all know the great honour it was for her to serve you all, and that she continues to pray for us everyday. I in turn let her know how much she has been a blessing to WCACYM, Summer Seminar, Youth Ministry in Western Canada. More importantly, the friendship and witness to Christ that Sister Maybelle was to myself and my family and I'm sure others will not vanish! She shared her desire to be with her community more, and live a life of pray (even more!) and this is an answer to that.
Her years of service as WCACYM Summer Seminar Administrator have continued the great legacy she inherited from Odile Wilson and Jacinthe Green. We have seen continued advocacy and passion for professional training in our field of ministry. We will continue to offer the Certificate in Youth Ministry Studies, as well as the Enrichment Stream that will be one of the legacy marks left by Sister Maybelle.
In the interim, I have taken on the responsibilities of administering Summer Seminar. November - January is a critical juncture in finalizing details and sending out packages and letters to supporters. We will in due course be searching and advertising for her replacement.
But, CORE has also seen this as an opportunity to really call on the alumni of Summer Seminar and WCACYM family to step up and serve! After Sister Maybelle turned over her responsibilities and boxes of stuff, I was overwhelmed at the work she and the administrators before have taken on.
So leading up to the Annual Gathering in January (Details WILL come out this week, we apologize for the delay), I would like to ask you to pray and discern if you are in a position to join a volunteer team to help the future Administrators of Summer Seminar. This could be during the year doing admin and promotion work from where you are, or coming to help facilitate and prep for the week in the summer. Reflect on your gifts, time, and how Summer Seminar has been a blessing to you. With more hands on deck, we have the opportunity to make Summer Seminar grow and flourish even more.
So let us give thanks and press on! I encourage you to email us if you wish to get involved. We will also be putting something together at that Annual Gathering to pass on our gratitude to Sister Maybelle.
Finally, if you wish to pass on words of thanks to Sister Maybelle you may connect with her still on Facebook, or email wcacym.summerseminar(at)yahoo.ca which we'll ensure she receives.
Peace to you all, and blessed All Souls Day!
Chairperson, Western Canadian Association of Catholic Youth Ministers
I wanted to take a little time this coming week to get alumni of our Summer Seminar program to explain why it is such a transformational and worthwhile program!
We are blest to be launching a new Enrichment Stream for Certificate Alumni, or those looking to dive deeper into some topics not covered in detail, or emerging trends and issues. We'll highlight that later this week.
But first my 3 C's on why you should complete the Canadian Certificate in Youth Ministry Studies.
Participants feel more confident in their youth ministry role because they have integrated and applied the most recent and innovative theory and approaches into their own setting and responsibilities.
The comprehensive sequence of courses provides a solid foundation of theory, theology and practical approaches, which can be applied in any parish or school youth ministry setting.
This is a nationally-recognized curriculum, offered in 25 sites and sponsored by over 50 dioceses, whose graduates are in parish, school, and diocesan leadership positions all over the U.S., Canada, Ireland, and Scotland.
And that's just 3 reasons you should register today for Summer Seminar!
A love letter to all Summer Seminar Students:
Doing your homework matters, and we love you and are proud of all of you persevering today finishing your assignments.
You may think it a crazy waste of time and stress. But let me give you a few reasons why it isn't.
1) You're not the first or the last to do it.
2) You inspire and support one another.
3) You're a testament to the work ethic of Youth Ministry workers. All these long nights, extra cups of coffee, and hand cramps help witness to your devotion to growing in your expertise at serving God's beloved children and church. Taking time away from team meetings, family, sleep, and work is a great sacrifice in order to better oneself to serve. Not everyone is willing to give that much of themselves, so be proud and know it is appreciated and noticed!
4) Your passion and dedication to your calling to serve young people is evident by not just relying on natural talent and, "winging it on a prayer". Although we're all gifted and guided by God's spirit - sometimes God asks us to put our own extra effort and investment. It is a humble act to become a life long learner, and you are all great witnesses to that! Know that your youth benefit from your tireless work to improve and gain new wisdom, but also by your example of dedication to a cause. Young people long to throw themselves "All In" as our good friend Michael Chiasson would say. They only benefit and gain courage to do so by seeing you do this into your craft and career in youth ministry.
5) You're paving the way for the next wave of leaders. I was a delinquent 3 years late to the party of starting my certificate in Youth Ministry. I was also a university drop out who didn't want to admit it, but was afraid of failing again at "school". The example of friends before me and their encouragement gave me courage to get back on the saddle. If this university dropout can do it, anyone can - and you all tell that story by your various situations and perseverance in completing the courses.
6) Finally, celebrate well. Eat a whole cheesecake. Have that beer. Dance in the snow. Rejoice and proclaim what you've accomplished. Call a friend and scream "I'M DONE!!!!" to them. Don't just jumped into the next thing. Relish and sit with your accomplishment. And of course, invite and encourage others to step up to the challenge next!
Well done Summer Seminar students. We're proud to have you in the family.