Youth Ministry

St. Mary's welcomes and invites all the youth of our parish to join us in a wide-variety of events designed to deepen faith, serve those in need, and to bring together friends, old and new.  To learn more about our Youth Ministry or St. Mary's keep an eye on our parish website and bulletin. Here are a few of the opportunities and ways to get involved.


Steubenville East Conference


Each summer, Life Teen hosts five different Steubenville Youth Conferences (East, West, NYC, Atlanta & Lone Star) with the hopes of strengthening and inspiring teens and youth groups in their collective journeys to Christ.  Sponsored by Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio, this life-changing weekend  that draws nearly 60,000 teens each year and is a great experience for all those that attend with incredible music, inspiring speakers, and a chance to see what being a Catholic teen is really all about.

Bishop McManus joined the 125 teens from our diocese that took part in the Steubenville East Conference from July 17th - July 19th in Lowell, MA.   Aileen and Jason Lemoine and Kim and Christopher Tran attended from St. Mary's.  It was an amazing hope-filled weekend seeing these teens so actively engaged in their faith. 

 


High School Summer Service Trips


Over the last two weeks, teens from our parish have served in Newark, NJ and Brooklyn, NY with Young Neighbors in Action.   Young Neighbors is a Catholic organization which combines hands-on learning (faith in action) with large group activities which challenges teens to think about who Jesus calls us to be. Last week, those who served in Newark volunteered at a special needs camp for children and adults from low-income homes.  

 

One of the team's blessings on the Newark trip was Kay Cosmo, an 82-year-old parishioner who volunteered and worked alongside the teens from our parish.  It was her first service trip...82 is as good a year as any to do something new!!!  In contrast, this week those students who traveled to Brooklyn are assisting at an elder center used mainly by people from impoverished backgrounds.

We also have 3 groups of students that departed for Bridgeport, CT, Wilmington, DE, and Topsham, ME with Habitat for Humanity.  Students volunteering for Habitat for Humanity are helping to build low-cost homes for homeless veterans and others. At each of the Habitat sites, our students have met and interacted with the people they are building the house for helping them to understand the challenges that some people face on a daily basis.


Annual Benefit Concert for Camp Sunshine 


Parishioner Jill Vaccaro went on a Summer Service trip to Camp Sunshine during her sophomore year of high-school and was so moved by her experience that she has returned to volunteer at Camp on her own every year since. As a way of supporting the camp and families that attend, for the last 5 years, Jill has organized a benefit concert to raise money that covers the cost of sending a family to the camp for one week.  The 6th annual concert was held on Saturday, July 30th.  You can learn more about Camp Sunshine by clicking here.


Summer Volleyball League

Teens and young adults from St. Mary's are participating in the Recreational Diocesan Volleyball League this summer.  Games are held on Monday evenings at St. Christopher Parish in Worcester and we play against St. Brigid's Millbury, St. Ann's Nth Oxford, North American Martyrs Auburn, Our Lady of Good Counsel Boylston, Christ the King Worcester, St. Aloysius/St. Jude Leicester.  Thank you Jenn and Emily Pegg for coordinating for St. Mary's!  This league is also sponsored by the New Evangelization Worcester () for Youth & Young Adults  which serves the young people and those that minister to them throughout the Worcester Diocese.  To learn more about NEW, check out their website or like them on Facebook!


Pure In Heart


A group of young adults get together once a month at 7pm at St. Mary’s in Shrewsbury to pray, share helpful info regarding the struggles of living according to God’s plan and of course, eat.  To learn more, you can send an mail to worcester@pureinheartamerica.org or connect with the group on Facebook by clicking here!


Young Adult Contemporary Ensemble

The music at the 5:30 Mass has a contemporary flair and includes liturgical music is written in a pop (sometimes rock!) setting. This group is comprised of young adult parishioners who are vocalists as well as instrumentalists.  If you are interested in joining this group, you can contact Rick Zinkus at 508-450-1261 or riczin58@verizon.net.


Once a month during the school year, teens are invited to join Fr. Juan after the 5:30 p.m. Mass for pizza and conversation in the large meeting room on the 2nd floor of the church.   Watch the bulletin for more information.


God Squad