Tom is a junior at Open World Learning in Saint Paul. He is involved in our parish as a peer minister and has participated in numerous service opportunities both at Saint Joan of Arc and in his community.
IS 42: 1-4; 6-7
Thus says the LORD:
Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one with whom I am pleased,
upon whom I have put my spirit;
he shall bring forth justice to the nations, not crying out, not shouting,
not making his voice heard in the street. a bruised reed he shall not break,
and a smoldering wick he shall not quench, until he establishes justice on the earth;
the coastlands will wait for his teaching.
I, the LORD, have called you for the victory of justice, I have grasped you by the hand;
I formed you, and set you as a covenant of the people, a light for the nations,
to open the eyes of the blind, to bring out prisoners from confinement,
and from the dungeon, those who live in darkness.
My name is Tom and I am a junior at Open World Learning in Saint Paul. Part of this week's reading was the quote “Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one with whom I am pleased, upon whom I have put my spirit.” This really speaks to me, especially the servant part.
Service is a really big part of my life and one of the reasons I decided to be confirmed this past year. I really enjoy that the Catholic Church makes a commitment to service, and that Saint Joan’s gives so many opportunities to serve the community. Whether it is helping out with soup kitchens or sleeping outside on the street, Saint Joan’s has given me many experiences serving people I wouldn’t have otherwise had.
This past summer I went on a service trip to Pine Ridge Indian reservation in South Dakota. This trip had a big impact on me, and it reinforced my value of service and influenced my decision to be a peer minister. Working all day and spending time in community with people that believed in God just felt right.
I made many connections at Pine Ridge that I still carry today. I always enjoy talking and working alongside with the people I serve. I think doing something for someone is good, but getting to know them and their story makes it that much more meaningful and valuable. I do a camp every year called Urban Cross, and we go around my neighborhood doing projects for those that are unable to do it themselves. I have repainted fences, reinforced foundation, torn down sheds, and weeded more plants then a jungle contains.
I have been on many service trips, both within my community and away from it. Each one has impacted me in a positive way, and has made me a more complete person. I would recommend that everyone does a form of service, no matter how big or how small. We are all privileged, and it is part of being Catholic, and honestly just a good person, to serve those less fortunate than you.
So my challenge to you is find an act of service, no matter how big or how small, and do it within the next month. You do not know how big of an impact it will make on the person, and it will leave you feeling both fulfilled and ready to serve more. I am Tom, and I am a servant to those in need.
Our youth at SJA have amazing things to say. Our goal is to give them a platform to share their thoughts on topics they want to talk about. Their thoughts are uniquely theirs. From politics to faith, school issues to our church, this blog shares their voices with our community.