The OYM welcomed three Spring Interns into our ministry team last month. We are excited and blessed to have them join us in serving youth ministry in our Archdiocese of St. Louis! Today I want to introduce you to Maggie, so check out somethings she shared with me:
School and Year? Saint Louis University, Junior
What are you studying? Double major in Communication and Theology
Home Parish? St. Joseph-Manchester
When did you take ownership of your faith?
The psychologist M. Scott Peck said, “there is no such thing as a good hand-me-down religion.” Though I was born and raised Roman Catholic, I believe that he is completely correct. My faith would mean nothing to me if it were simply a carbon copy of my parents’ faith.
The first time that my Catholic faith became my own was right before high school. I had that “Aha! Moment” ($1000 to Oprah for using that phrase) that so many 8th graders have on the Luke 18 retreat. I finally realized that I could have a personal relationship with God that extended beyond going to Mass with my family every Sunday.
I believe that I am taking more ownership of my faith as it becomes more of an “adult faith.” For the first time, as I study at Saint Louis University, it has truly been my choice to go to Mass every Sunday. I have found friends and mentors that build me up and challenge me in my faith. As a theology major, I find God’s grace in digging deeper into my faith through academic study. I see God at work every day in the classroom, on the Ultimate Frisbee field, and even hanging out at Humphrey’s on a Friday afternoon catching up with old friends (YES, God is even present at a college bar!—Don’t worry, I’m 21.). My faith hasn’t always been easy in college; I have had my times of doubt. However, I think that I have come to understand the complexity of my faith. Even if I am not particularly “on fire” in my faith, I always find that God is showering His grace on me in some way. I now know that I am always on a quest to “take ownership of my faith” in my constant “aspiration to truth, the good, the beautiful, justice, and love” in my life (JP II, Redemptor Hominis).
What sparked your interest in youth ministry?
I was one of those LifeTeen kids in high school. I went to LifeTeen at St. Joe-Manchester for the first couple of years in high school and then at Incarnate Word for the latter part. My experience with LifeTeen in high school led me to helping out as a core member for IW during my sophomore year at SLU. I have found joy in sharing my faith with others and connecting with people on a deeper level. I cherish my internship in the Office of Youth Ministry, because I get to help the Church connect with teens on a larger scale. It’s awesome to be a part of the organization that made it possible for me to find my faith during my teenage years.
Recent Glimpse of God?
Last year, I hated that song “Give Me Faith” by Elevation Worship. It was because it starts with the phrase, “I need you to soften my heart.” I hated that song because I was stubborn, and I didn’t want to admit that those lyrics were speaking directly to me. I recently had an experience where I realized that God has been trying to break through my hardness of heart for quite some time now. He has put some awesome people in my life at the right times to help me break down the barriers to “soften my heart.”
Farthest place from home ever traveled?
I went to Munich, Germany while studying abroad in Spain… I think that’s the farthest east I ever got.
Sizzling steak on the grill
Favorite pizza topping?
Pineapple and green peppers...they go surprisingly well together!
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Born and raised in St. Louis. I am a memeber of St. Joseph Church in Manchester. I was a core member for two years at Incarnate Word Parish and was a youth minister for seven years at St. Joseph Church. I was a coordinator of youth ministry for the OYM for four year and became the directer of the OYM in June of 2012. I am married to my lovely wife, Samantha, and we have an awesome son, Angelo and beautiful daughter, Gabriella.