Encouragement from St. John Paul II for Peer Ministers:
Proclaim to everyone that God loves them, that he has given himself for them in Christ Jesus, and that he invites them to an unending life of happiness. Once this Gospel has been accepted as the ‘good news’, it demands to be shared.
All baptized Christians must commit themselves to evangelization, conscious that God is already at work in the mind and hearts of their listeners, just as he prompted the Ethiopian to ask for baptism when Philip told him ‘the good news of Jesus’ (Acts 8:26-40). Read it by clicking here.
Evangelization is thus a part of the great mystery of God’s self - revelation to the world: it involves the human effort to preach the Gospel and the powerful work of the Holy Spirit in those who encounter its saving message.
Since we are proclaiming a mystery, we are servants of a supernatural gift, which surpasses anything our human minds are capable of fully grasping or explaining, yet which attracts by its inner logic and beauty.”
What’s Peer Ministry?
Good question! Peer Ministry, like any ministry, is how God takes what is already true ABOUT us and makes it true IN us. There's a beautiful story in Scripture of Jesus walking on the water and inviting Peter to get out of the boat and walk to Him on the water. (Read it here: Matthew 14:22-33) Peter actually tries it! What does he discover? IT’S TRUE!! IT’S TRUE!! How much faith must it have taken for him to step out of that boat? Remember, he most likely could not swim.
That’s exactly what ministry does for us. It takes what we know about Jesus and transforms it into experience of Jesus so that, just like Peter, we experience that, IT’S TRUE!! What do you suppose it would feel like to know that God is loving people through you? “Hmmm, God used me? Maybe this is more real than I ever imagined…” But first we have to answer Jesus’ invitation to step out of our boats – out of our comfort zones – and trust Him. God honors when we do that and He blesses us so that we can be a blessing to others.
Peer Ministry Is:
- A Church leadership program that allows high school students to use their talents and gifts in order to help their peers grow in faith, specifically through Confirmation Preparation and Youth Ministry activities
- An opportunity to develop skills like sharing your faith, leading discussions, using the Bible, and welcoming others
- For any high school student who has already been Confirmed in their faith
- Fun, exciting, and a great way to make new friends who share your values and beliefs
- Hard work that demands time, commitment and sacrifice
Peer Ministry Is Not:
- Required or necessary for ongoing participation in Youth Ministry
- Just for outgoing people
- A clique or a club
- A chance to prove that you are better than other people
- Just about getting service hours
- A nice thing to include on a college application
What does it take to be a Peer?
- A sincere desire and willingness to share, on some level, who you are and where you are in your faith walk. A Peer Ministry team, like the church, is made up of individuals at different places in their faith journey.
- Doubts and unanswered questions are ok, but even in those there is an opportunity to minister.
- Every person is unique in the eyes of God and each of you possess various talents and gifts that when used collectively allows us to minister to all teens in the parish.
- Team members will bring a variety of family backgrounds to their ministry. Some feel more comfortable one on one while others do better in large groups.
- Each and every team member brings his or her own special personality and the whole Peer Ministry team will be enriched by the diverse personalities of the team members.
- A willingness and ability to make Peer Ministry a priority. Your regular participation at Sunday Night Gatherings, retreats and other events is critical!
Interested? Great! Let’s chat. Call John at 410-721-5770, ext 229 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org