Kelly Colangelo

An All-Star Core Team: The Value of College Students

Duhnella

Loudahhh

Magreezy

Shmoren

What are these names you might ask? Crazy, right? These are the prestigious nicknames of my amazing college student leaders.

In my time of youth ministry I have had the privilege to work alongside college students seeking to chaperone summer trips or just help out at a Life Night. I am always amazed by their passion and zeal for the Gospel message and spreading this message with others. I have found not only do the teens benefit from college students, but the Core Team, myself as a youth minister, and the entire parish gains an enormous amount of wisdom.

How does having college students help the overall Life Teen group?

  1. Christian witness. The most important resources we have in our ministry are the living witness of adults in the parish. College students that help in Life Teen are real people in the “real world” – still very youthful, trying their best to live a life of holiness.
  2. College students have joy! Mother Teresa said, “Joy is a net of love by which we can catch souls.” College students are passionate about their beliefs. There may be exceptions to the rule, but overall, when directing their energies toward some endeavor, that of the person Jesus Christ, they are enthusiastic. Furthermore, they tend to recruit others to become involved and active in their faith journey. College students have a natural proclivity for making disciples.
  3. Spiritual Renewal. Youth ministry is not about what you know; it’s about who you know. College students can work or play and direct all of this toward the Kingdom. They desire a deeper relationship with Christ in their own life, which is thus contagious to others.

How does volunteering as a college student help himself or herself?

  1. It offers them on the job training. As we learn from them, no doubt they will learn from us. Situations, experiences, decision making – takes place at any youth gathering. Our role as mentor can serve to nurture and encourage their leadership path.
  2. They take greater ownership of their faith. Rather than just keeping the faith to themselves, they are able to develop leadership qualities and put their faith in action.
  3. Growth in their relationship with Christ. The reason anyone is there is for the teens. But, it would be silly if we didn’t allow the faith experiences, talks, and relationships to affect us and ultimately help deepen our relationship with Christ.

It’s kind of like an exchange program. And in the process of it all, we, youth, young adult, and adult, seek to grow in our relationship with the Lord and help win more souls to heaven. As you are recruiting more help this semester, why not invite some college students to assist?

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Kelly Colangelo

About the Author

I got an award for having the neatest hand writing in second grade, my mom did my homework. I’m not a morning person; I love ketchup, blueberry cake donuts and mint chocolate chip ice cream. I want to go to heaven… and take as many people with me with as possible. Follow me on Twitter or Instagram at Kelly Colangelo.