St. Joseph’s Academy freshmen gathered on campus on November 7 for their class retreat. Led by senior Student Ministers, the freshmen enjoyed small group discussions, activities and games, journaling, witness testimonies, Adoration and Reconciliation. Father Mathew Dunn was the celebrant for the retreat mass.
Campus Minister Jade Spears and Assistant Campus Minister Chelsea Colomb organized the experience. “It is my prayer that every freshman student left the retreat feeling rejuvenated and also got to encounter God’s love in a new way,” Spears said. “I also hope the class got to bond in a new way as well as the senior Student Ministers who spent the day leading the girls.”
Sarah Guidroz said her class retreat was a meaningful experience. “I learned that I need to work on my personal relationship with God rather than merely ‘going through the motions,’” she said. “I learned that my classmates are also trying to grow in their personal relationships with God, and this experience will impact me moving ahead because it helped me refresh my faith with God by reminding me of my purpose as His follower.”
Senior Catherine Burkhalter was among the 41 senior Student Ministers who helped lead the retreat. She said she enjoyed interacting with the freshmen in the small group discussions and during the various games and activities. “I hope that the freshmen got to grow closer to God and better understand their relationship with God, but also strengthen their relationship with each other and hopefully meet new people in their small groups that they might not have talked to before,” she said.
Senior Student Minister Mackenzie Millet said she especially enjoyed the witness talk by her classmate, Caitlyn Rogers. “I feel like I got to connect to her and her story in multiple ways,” she said. “It also reminded me how we don’t always know what is going on in other people's lives and how our actions/words can really impact others. I really think this talk also impacted the freshmen and how they view things in their own lives. I hope the freshmen were able to get to know their classmates better as well as grow closer to Christ. Freshman Retreat gave all of us an opportunity to talk to Christ through small groups, mass and adoration.”
Faculty members helping to facilitate the day were Lori Harper, Sarah Nelms, Sharon Ogra, Sister Chris Pologa, Jade Spears, Jamal Tajdaran, Timothy Waller, Jackie Zeller and Erin Hart.
The SJA Dads’ Club provided lunch.
Mindy Brodhead Averitt