Saint Viator News

Delivering the latest news from Saint Viator High School.

Month: July 2017

Saint Viator Students Help Lead 8th Annual Viatorian Youth Congress

DSC_0031Saint Viator High School students made up the largest of eight delegations at this year’s Viatorian Youth Congress, which wrapped up Thursday.

Led by Mrs. Cathy Abrahamian, a Viatorian associate, they included 10 student delegates, two student leaders, Br. Peter Lamick, CSV, ’07, and Annie Nagel ’14, who served as one of two college students co-directing the congress as young adult coordinators.

Mr. John Paulik and Fr. Corey Brost participated in the group interview portion of the congress.

Mr. John Paulik and Fr. Corey Brost participated in the group interview portion of the congress.

They convened for four days with 80 teens and young college students—representing all the places where Viatorians minister—at the Bellarmine Jesuit Retreat House in Barrington for an event that is part retreat, part youth rally, and part leadership conference.

Throughout the congress, teens engage in small-group discussions and sit in on keynote presentations and prayer workshops, while attending daily Mass and having opportunities to interact with nearly two dozen Viatorian associates, brothers, and priests who are involved.

Fr. Dan Lydon, CSV, '73 talks about his background with the Viatorians during a group interview that included Mary O'Connell '16, left.

Fr. Dan Lydon, CSV, ’73 talks about his background with the Viatorians during a group interview that included Mary O’Connell ’16, left.

Fr. Corey Brost, CSV, returned for his eighth consecutive year. He founded the congress back when he served as vocations director for the Viatorian Community. Initially, he designed it as a way to bring together teens from various Viatorian sites, but increasingly he has seen its impact on young people who take what they learn back to their home schools and parishes.

Annie Nagle '14 serves as young adult coordinator of this year's Viatorian Youth Congress with Patrick Waller, a parishioner of St. Viator Catholic Community in Las Vegas.

Annie Nagle ’14 serves as young adult coordinator of this year’s Viatorian Youth Congress with Patrick Waller, a parishioner of St. Viator Catholic Community in Las Vegas.

Ultimately, he says, the experience stays with delegates and young adult leaders long after they leave the congress and even prompts them to become involved in campus ministry in college.

“The VYC helps our young faith leaders realize that they are part of a worldwide family,” Fr. Brost says, “that is changing the world.”

Service & Song Camp Draws Record Attendance

DSC_0021A tradition of immersing incoming students into Saint Viator’s commitment to service continues this week at the fourth annual Service & Song Camp.

More than 130 students turned out for the five day camp, its largest group ever. They include junior high students and incoming freshmen as well as current Saint Viator students and young alumni serving as leaders.

On the first day, senior Ann Haubenreiser’s group spread out through the local neighborhood to deliver pamphlets about their food collection at the end of the week.

DSC_0019“We’re spreading awareness,” Ann said. “It’s our call to help feed the hungry.”

In fact, feeding the hungry was one of the driving forces which led Fr. Corey Brost, CSV, to start the unique camp, back in 2013.

“As we go about this, there are people in the world who are hungry, lonely, sick and alone,” Fr. Brost said on the opening day. “This week we’re going to feed the hungry and visit the lonely. We’ll be changing the lives of people by the work you do. You’ll be changing the world because you had the guts to come this week.”

This year’s destinations include: Community Threads, Sisters of the Living Word, WINGS, the Wheeling Township Food Pantry and the Viatorian Community Garden, all in Arlington Heights; Journey Care in Barrington; Catholic Charities in Des Plaines; St. Joseph Home for the Elderly and Journeys: The Road Home, both in Palatine; and Feed My Starving Children in Schaumburg. They also will help out at homes of area senior citizens.

Students divided into 10 teams, which grouped junior high and incoming students with teen leaders from Saint Viator. Each afternoon starts out with a reflection on their service and people they impact, as well as a song led by student musicians and choral members.

“It’s neat to see that we’re making a contribution,” said sophomore Bryce McDonnell of Arlington Heights, after his first day of working with his team at the vegetable garden tended by the Sisters of the Living Word. “It was cool to work with Sr. Barbara.”

Senior Richard Rinka of Mount Prospect described the impact of his group’s delivery of sandwiches they had made to clients served by Catholic Charities.

“We as a community can be a light of hope for people,” he said. “Making sandwiches may not have seemed like much, but we are truly feeding the hungry.”

At St. Joseph’s Home for the Elderly in Palatine, camp members entertained residents with an impromptu luau, complete with presenting leis to the group and the boys even performed their version of a hula dance.

“It was so fun,” said Anne Sheehan ’69, whose 93-year old mother, Dorothea Caffrey, lives at the home. “It made my mother’s day and that of all the other people there. Their visit just meant so much to the residents.”

The second day of the camp also drew President Brian Liedlich and Principal Karen Love to drop in and observe the enthusiasm.

“As a school, we’re not only committed to rigorous academics,” Mr. Liedlich said, “but to carrying out the gospel values and serving others.”

Seeing so many students engaged in service impressed Mrs. Love, in only her second week on the job.

“Thank you for carrying out the good work that you do, through service,” Mrs. Love said. “I look forward to getting to know each and every one of you.”

Br. Peter Lamick, CSV ’07, is co-directing the camp this year with Fr. Brost and he offers a reflection each day before groups head out to their work sites.

“Try to see Jesus in the people we’re serving,” he told students. “When we talk about taking up our cross, we’re talking about responding to people who are in need.”

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