Middle & High School Faith Formation
Parent Followup Resources
Week of January 17th-24th
Among Us, Week 2: No "Them," Only US
This past Sunday night at Mass & Mercy, we focused on the theme of justice and leadership, especially the call of our political leaders to lead justly, and our own calling to cultivate racial justice.

In light of this week's Presidential Inauguration, Fr. Patrick invited us to pray with the story of Samuel's calling by God in 1 Samuel 3. He also suggested we continue on reading in 1 Kings 9-10, where we see a peaceful transition of power as Saul is anointed king. You may also wish to pray the prayer included in this weekend's bulletin.

Our guest speaker, local youth minister and national speaker Mr. Rudy Dehaney, helped us to define some important vocabulary in the racial justice conversation, including terms like interpersonal, institutional, and structural racism, and helped us dive deeper into what it means to be anti-racist. He introduced us to the See, Judge, Act model of living out Catholic social teaching. Rudy also invited us to:

CHALLENGE yourself & your own assumptions.
  • Just as in our journey to holiness, we're never "done" this side of Heaven, on the journey toward antiracism, we're never done learning and working toward racial justice. It takes humility to admit we don't have all the answers, and humility to listen when our instinct is to respond immediately.

EDUCATE yourself around racial justice.

DIVERSIFY your life.
  • If your group of friends, coworkers, etc., is not diverse, try to reach out and intentionally build genuine relationships with people who are different. Get to know people on their own terms, and listen - but don't ask people of color to educate you on their experience.
  • We don't always have control over the demographics of who we encounter in our lives, but one area where do WE have a lot of control is what we consume online. So, a really great way to diversify your life is to follow diverse voices on social media & video platforms like YouTube! Some suggestions:
  • Redeemed Online just did an Advent Made Simple series featuring lots of awesome Black Catholic speakers - this list is a great place to start! Search for and follow them on your preferred social media:
  • Fr. Josh Johnson
  • Chika Anyanwu
  • Fr. Tony Ricard
  • Dr. Ansel Augustine
  • Michael Parker
  • Santonio Hil
  • Avera Maria Santo
  • Deacon Ajani Gibson
  • Sister Desiré Findlay
  • Many of the above listed speakers (and MORE) are featured on this site (with links to more information about each of them, including their websites/social media handles): https://www.catholicspeakersofcolor.com/
  • Search the hashtag #RendYourHearts to find posts from Catholics of color (& supportive white Catholics) related to a Novena to the Sacred Heart prayed last June for racial justice - many of these accounts remain actively involved in ongoing racial justice conversation and action

  • Prayer is what keeps us centered and focused on what God is calling each of us to do to work toward racial justice.
  • The Sacraments (especially Reconciliation and Eucharist) and our personal prayer time with God give us clarity and strength, and allow us to discern our part in the work of healing the Body of Christ.
  • Remember, each part of the Body of Christ suffers if one part is suffering. Even if we aren't personally aware of the wound and sin of racism, it affects our brothers and sisters, and so it hurts us all.
  • Each part of the Body has a role to play in bringing the Body of Christ to health and wholeness. We can't do it all by ourselves, but we're not alone in this journey!
  • There's no "them" in the Body of Christ - there's only US. But that also means that there's only US to be open to the work of the Holy Spirit and cooperate with God's will for all people. If not now, when? If not you, who?

WILL YOU TAKE THE RACIAL JUSTICE COMMITMENT CHALLENGE? You are invited to write down (or record in a video) YOUR personal and/or family commitment to growing in racial justice. Send it to Ms. Rena at renablack@stbernadette.org and let us know if you're open to your commitment being shared publicly!

Matthew 7:7-12
Luke 10:25-37

CCC 1935
CCC 1947
Middle & High School Faith Formation
Connect Groups Continue (VIRTUALLY)
This Sunday, January 24th
Middle & High School Faith Formation Connect Groups continue THIS Sunday, January 24th. The Zoom information for the winter/spring Middle & High School Faith Formation semester is as follows:

  • HIGH SCHOOL, 6:00-7:00 pm
  • Meeting ID: 885 7373 3063
  • Passcode: LoveGod
  • MIDDLE SCHOOL, 7:30-8:30 pm
  • Meeting ID: 839 5064 6164
  • Passcode: BeChurch

IMPORTANT CONTENT NOTE FOR SUNDAY'S SESSION: Our Connect Groups sessions on THIS COMING Sunday, January 24th will cover the topics of vocation and chastity, including some relevant aspects of human sexuality. If you would prefer to cover that night's material at home as a family, please let Ms. Rena know so that she can provide materials and document your parental instruction/opt-out status.

If your child has not yet participated in Faith Formation virtually, you must review and complete before Sunday:

Regarding plans for February and beyond, we are not scheduled to meet on Feb. 7th or 14th. The decision regarding the possibility of in-person gatherings for mid-February and beyond will be made as those dates approach. All scheduled meeting dates remain the same, but whether they will be offered virtually only OR in both modes depends on what is prudent given our changing circumstances and regulations.

The entire calendar for Winter/Spring 2021 Sunday evening faith fomation is available at: https://www.stbernadette.org/middle-high-school-faith-formation

Additional questions? Don't hesitate to reach out: renablack@stbernadette.org

P.S.- If you're not familiar with the popular game which our series title "Among Us" references, here's a brief overview: https://ministrytoparents.com/what-is-among-us-what-parents-and-leaders-need-to-know/
Virtual Opportunity for Youth
Join Archbishop Lori for a Discussion
About the Many Facets of Being Pro-Life
(It's Not Just About Abortion!)
All teens (& their parents are welcome to join them "behind the scenes") are invited to a virtual youth event Wednesday, January 27th from 7-8 pm featuring a Q&A with:
  • Archbishop Lori
  • Abortion Survivor and Speaker Josiah Presley
  • Life Advocate Vicki Schieber (who works to end the death penalty)
  • Praise and worship by Bob Rice

Let Ms. Rena know if you're planning to participate!
Follow St. Bernadette Youth Ministry on social media for updates
for middle & high school families & those who work with them.
Questions? Please don't hesitate to reach out. We're here to help!

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