Campus Ministry

Campus Ministry

The role of our Campus Minister, with the assistance of the administration, faculty, and Mission Effectiveness Committee of the Mater Dei School Board, is to foster personal and spiritual growth and to draw young people to responsible participation in the life, mission and work of the faith community.

The first concern of Campus Ministry is the individual student. One-on-one interaction with students, augmented by the services of our on-site counselor, provides students with assistance when needed. In addition, our Campus Minister serves as the freshman class advisor and coordinates our school-wide Safe Homes Network.

Moreover, since Church is a community of individuals with different gifts, Campus Ministry programs challenge students to develop their unique talents, especially within the sacramental and liturgical life of the Church.

Finally, our Campus Minister promotes the faith development of our students through daily morning prayer in our Chapel, weekly Masses for our Theology classes, all-school Masses throughout the year, annual retreats for all students, and service, including the three-week Senior Service Project.

Know that Campus Ministry, referred to as “the students’ home away from home,” will serve as one of your many partners in the growth of your child!

Liturgical Opportunities

Masses
We are pleased to offer Mass on numerous occasions during the school year (Liturgical Schedule). The Masses, for which pastors from our surrounding parishes volunteer to preside, are held in our gymnasium. All parish leaders, as well as parents and alumni, are always invited to join our students for these celebrations of faith. At the November 1st Liturgy all grandparents are specially invited and recognized. Mothers are our special guests at our May Mass.

Prayer Services
We are pleased to offer prayer services each morning at 7:55 in our Chapel. All students and faculty are invited to attend. Additionally, students also experience prayer services throughout the year as a part of their Theolgy class.

Lenten Activities
During the season of Lent, students and faculty are invited to attend daily Eucharist in the chapel and to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

Liturgical Planning Team
Our students volunteer to plan all aspects of our Masses. Specifically, our students select the music, verify the readings, create the petitions, and prepare a welcoming environment. All students are welcome to join this organization. (For additional information, please view Liturgical Planning Team in “Activities.”)

Liturgical Music Group
Our students share their gift of music, both vocal and instrumental, during our Masses. All students are welcome to join this organization. (For additional information, please view Liturgical Music Group in “Activities.”)

Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion
Our senior students who possess a desire to play a more active role in the celebration of the Eucharist are invited to serve as Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion. After completing the required training, the senior students are then commissioned at a Mass. In addition to serving the Mater Dei community, our students may also serve their parish community.

Mass Set-Up Crew
Our students prepare the gymnasium for each of our Masses. Specifically, the crew arrives early in the morning to set-up the stage and chairs, and remains after Mass to remove the stage and the chairs.

Retreats

Mater Dei Retreats

Freshman, Sophomore and Junior Students
We are pleased to offer our freshman, sophomore, and juniors students a one-day retreat during the second semester. On their retreat day, students are bussed to St. Anthony Catholic Church’s Parish Center in Beckemeyer. A retreat team from NET Ministries, a youth ministry organization based in St. Paul, Minnesota, leads our students during this faith experience, focusing on a different aspect of faith for each class. The NET team consists of approximately twelve college–age men and women who volunteer a year of their lives to share their faith with students across the nation. Screened and trained, the NET team members do an excellent job of challenging our freshman and sophomore students to deepen both their faith and their understanding of our Catholic tradition. (For additional information on NET Ministries, please contact Ms. Colleen McDermott, our Campus Minister (618.526.7216 or cmcdermott@materdeiknights.org), or visit www.netusa.org).

Senior Students
We are pleased to offer our senior students a one-day retreat during the first semester. On their retreat day, the students are bussed to St. Anthony Catholic Church’s Parish Center in Beckemeyer. A retreat team from REAP, a Catholic youth retreat ministry of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, leads our students during this faith experience. Utilizing a different approach than the NET team, the REAP Team challenges our senior students to a greater degree than the underclass students. The REAP team consists of salaried and volunteer men and women who share their faith with students in the St. Louis metropolitan area. (For additional information on REAP, please contact Ms. Colleen McDermott, our Campus Minister (618.526.7216 or cmcdermott@materdeiknights.org), or visit www.reapteam.org).

Diocesan Retreats

Quest
All freshman and sophomore students are encouraged to attend Quest, a 33-hour retreat sponsored by the Diocese of Belleville. As an experience focused on sharing with other teens, Quest provides participants an opportunity to discover more about God, themselves and their relationships with family and friends. Facilitated by a team of lay adults, priests, sisters and teens, Quest begins Saturday at 10:00 a.m. and concludes Sunday at 7:00 p.m. (For additional information on Quest, please contact Ms. Colleen McDermott, our Campus Minister (618.526.7216 or cmcdermott@materdeiknights.org) or visit www.bellevilletec.org).

TEC (Teens Encounter Christ)
All juniors and seniors are encouraged to attend TEC, a three-day retreat sponsored by the Diocese of Belleville. As an experience in Christian living, TEC is designed to provide participants an opportunity to reflect and live the Paschal Mystery. TEC begins Saturday at 10:00 a.m. and concludes Monday at 5:00 p.m. (For additional information on TEC, please contact Ms. Colleen McDermott, our Campus Minister (618.526.7216 or cmcdermott@materdeiknights.org), or visit www.bellevilletec.org).

Counseling

As a means of more fully nurturing the spiritual, moral, intellectual, emotional, and social growth of our students, Campus Ministry serves as a safe environment, or an “ear,” for students who need someone to listen.

At Mater Dei, it is our desire that each student feels important and “at home.” Thus, Campus Ministry, in conjunction with teachers, puts forth every effort to recognize students who are experiencing difficulties and guides them to recognizing and sharing their gifts and talents.

In very difficult situations, Campus Ministry networks with other helping agencies, such as Catholic Social Services, Community Resource Center or other private agencies.

While students are encouraged to make an appointment, walk-ins are always welcome!