The Campus Ministry Program at Ascension Catholic Diocesan Regional School exists to nurture the faith of all members of our school community and to empower their professed faith into action. Our mission is to provide an environment in which the Holy Spirit can move, fill the hearts of our school family, and inspire them into action. Our curricular program is designed to form and inform our students as disciples of Jesus, focusing on the “nuts and bolts” of the Catholic Christian message, while the campus Ministry works to help the students to fulfill the command of Jesus to go out and love one another as He has loved us.
We are a Eucharistic people at Ascension Catholic. It is our weekly Mass that gives us our identity. Vatican II gave us the insight that it is from the Eucharist that all of our power flows. As Catholics, the Eucharist is the center of our lives because Jesus is truly present and gives himself totally to us in Holy Communion. It is the Eucharist that makes us who we are at Ascension Catholic.
For this reason, we spend much time in preparation on the weekly Mass. Our students serve in all the liturgical ministries: e.g. lectors, commentators, readers, altar servers, cross bearers, ushers, gift bearers, choir members and cantors. Students also write the introduction to the liturgy and the Prayers of the Faithful.
Since we have students from quite a few surrounding parishes attending our school, the priests of these parishes generously give their time to Preside at the Masses for us along with our Co-Chaplains, Father Philip Spano and Father Louis Oubre.
School Liturgical Choir
For the last 25 years, we have two choirs that lead the congregation in singing at our weekly school Masses, one in the High School and one in the Middle School. Other than leading the singing, their purpose is to elevate the minds and hearts of those gathered through music, the language of the angels. The music is chosen in keeping with the Scripture for the Eucharist and with the intention of helping those gathered to be prepared to receive Jesus and to become one body in Christ.
The students are offered the Sacrament of Reconciliation during the season of Advent and Lent. The Chaplains, Father Philip Spano and Father Louis Oubre will also make themselves available to the students at any time during the school year.
Every teacher in every classroom begins class with a prayer, not just the Religion teachers. The religion teachers may have more extensive prayer services in their classrooms.
Teens for Life
“Teens for Life” is an organization established by teens for the purpose of educating society on the horrors of Abortion. Mr. John Gallagher is the moderator of the organization at Ascension Catholic. Members promise to pray daily for the innocent unborn and their families, who also become victims of the agony of this sinful act. Through the prayers and sacrifices of these young people, abortion one day will be no more. Mother Theresa once said: “A nation that kills it’s unborn will never find peace.
New Service Program will be posted soon, it can be found on page 13 of the new Student Handbook.
Grades 7-12 have at least one Prayer Day each year. The Prayer Day has a different theme each year chosen according to the needs of the students. The Peer Ministers play a leadership role in the Prayer Days. They usually occur off campus in order to take the students out of their normal environment. They consist of prayers and activities designed to bring the students closer to God and to help them with some particular aspect of faith.
The seniors have a three day Retreat away from the school at a beautiful site, usually in the wilderness. This is a time for prayer, reflection, a time to get completely away from their normal activities and surroundings and hectic lives, in order to focus on God. Senior Retreat is a once in a lifetime experience that brings about a deepening of faith and love in the students.
It is conducted by a facilitator and a team of adults and several priests. It is carefully planned and evaluated by the team each year according to the needs of the students. It is a milestone in the lives of the students and many times in the lives of the team as well. In addition to helping the students in their relationship with God and with their classmates, parents will also tell us about deeper relationships as a result of the retreat. The school also sees the benefits of the retreat, because when the seniors return, they really take on their role as Disciples of Christ as they lead the school
Youth Ministry Field Trips
Many times Campus Ministry sponsors field trips to Abby Fest, World Youth Day and other youth functions of the Diocese. These events help to enrich the faith of our students and put our students in touch with Catholic students from other areas with whom they can share faith and fellowship