Blessed William Joseph Chaminade said, “We are all missionaries, and we consider ourselves on a permanent mission.” In September, high school and middle school students were commissioned to start or continue their journey of service in a special Apostolic Works Commissioning Mass held on each campus. Throughout each Mass, the message was clear, as a community we must continue the mission of the apostles and follow in the path of Mary and become agents of change.
“No matter what type of service you choose, no matter what organization you help, you are making a difference to someone,” said Chaminade student Gia Frank ’23 during her presentation at the middle school Mass. Frank continued to reflect upon her first experiences as a fifth-grader visiting Chaminade for the first time and how one student recognized her trepidation and made an effort to make her feel welcomed. “I just came here in search of a school, but I found a home and family I didn’t know was missing from my life. I have witnessed the power of God’s love through this community, and it is a powerful thing.”
The Mass was not only a call to action but also a reminder that God has blessed us all with unique talents and gifts to help one another. “If there is one thing God gave you that is powerful and cannot be overlooked, it’s your voices. What you do well, and what you are passionate about, is what makes you special. It is what makes you…you, and it is what makes you a servant leader.”
The Apostolic Works Service Learning Program is rooted in the Catholic, Marianist tradition of being in alliance with Mary’s mission: to nurture Christ in others and communities to transform the world by giving service to those in need through various methods of outreach. It empowers students to discern their gifts and apply them to organizations that expose them to life situations different from their own to become agents of change. From middle school through high school, students will experience a progressive growth in their responsibility of service from one grade level to the next. The program also spurs students to question why service and transformation are necessary, what changes have to be made, who needs to be served, what motivations move one to serve, and how adaptations and changes might be practically affected. Students discover an opportunity to connect the knowledge or skill they learn in a classroom with how it can be used to help others or transform conditions in their community.
Click here if you would like to read Gia Frank’s full reflection.