Saint Francis High School has a new youth group on campus for students who want to live their faith more deeply further and be in a community of like-minded peers.
Each month, several opportunities exist for students to participate in Ig-nite, a youth group that gives students a space to reﬂect, build connections and engage in leadership roles with campus ministry.
Senior Ana Brockmann, whose idea it was to start this group, explains that faith is not a topic that naturally comes up during lunch conversation so it has been good for her to have a place to discuss with others something that is integral to who she is.
“You have people to share your values and beliefs with,” she said. “My reason for doing Ignite is that I want to be a disciple of Christ, and I want to help others be a disciple and love their faith.”
Designed to be a welcoming group that is open to all students from all faith backgrounds, Ignite has given students the chance to practice Catholic traditions that are not otherwise performed at school. For example, at a recent morning meeting, students explained how to pray the rosary, and at a retreat that they organized, they entered into the ancient practice of praying before the Blessed Sacrament. There are also social gatherings in the evenings where students gather in small groups to reﬂect and discuss life issues.
For many students, the appeal of the youth group is knowing they will grow in their faith alongside their peers.
“I want to build relationships with friends and with God, and I see those worlds collide,” said senior Klarissa Yap.
Student leaders of the youth group say their goal is to help classmates see how their faith is applicable and relevant to all parts of their life, not just when they are at school or even at Ignite meetings.
“We want to foster a safe environment for people to express their faith and help students discover more of who they are in a spiritual aspect,” said senior Aristotle Vergara.