Student Faith Development through Campus Ministry
Saint Martin is a Catholic high school that welcomes students of all religious traditions. Rooted in Jesus Christ and participating in Jesus Christ’s mission of proclaiming the Good News to the world, the school places a high value on the ongoing faith development of its students. Faith is not an object to be obtained, but it is a continual journey toward closer union with God. To foster that growth, Camus Ministry offers a variety of faith experiences open to all students, which encourage each individual to live the school’s motto of “Work, Study, Serve, Lead, Pray.”
LITURGIES AND PRAYER
Acknowledging the importance of an active faith life of prayer and reflection, the school community gathers in celebration at school Masses and Prayer Services. Students are encouraged to engage in the planning and execution of these events as they participate in various ministries: Praise Dance, the Gospel Choir, Lectors, Gift Bearers, Altar Servers, etc. Recognizing the call to pray as a community of faith, all members of Saint Martin de Porres are expected to attend and participate at these events.
Each year, Saint Martin de Porres High School students participate in a mandatory retreat through Campus Ministry. The purpose of the retreat is to provide students with the opportunity to reflect on their relationship with God and others by taking part in a variety of engaging activities that are both relaxing and interactive.
Freshmen, sophomore and juniors students participate in an extended daylong retreat. Senior students participate in an overnight retreat. In addition, Campus Ministry offers other optional retreats, including, Kairos, and Men’s/Women’s Overnight Retreats.
Saint Martin de Porres High School invites its students to use their God-given talents and gifts for the purpose of serving others. Jesus Christ is the model for this service. Members of Saint Martin de Porres, seeking to find Christ in every individual, participate in various service experiences both at school and in the wider community. While such a notion of self-gift is contrary to much of the contemporary understanding of success, Saint Martin de Porres High School believes it allows the student to engage in a loving dialogue with the world upon graduation. Students engage in service in three different ways: service learning, service immersion, and voluntary service.
Because Saint Martin places high emphasis on both the classroom experience and the lived experience, all students participate in Service Learning projects each year in the school. Service Learning bridges the gap between classroom and real life situations. Together, students utilize material studied in class, and apply this knowledge as they actively engage in a service project that serves the greater community. In making service an integral part of the curriculum; Saint Martin de Porres expresses its commitment to forming a culture of service to others.
Saint Martin de Porres High School provides the opportunity for students to participate in service immersion experiences. Whether in Cleveland, West Virginia, New Orleans, El Salvador or elsewhere, Saint Martin students concretize the value of care which permeates the curriculum by participating in longer and more intense periods of service to others. Through these experiences, they learn about various social issues. Together with fellow students and their teachers, the students partner with other social service and charitable organizations in their mission of care. The students learn solidarity with others by working with those in need. The immersion experience also includes reflection on the causes of need in particular segments of the population. This reflection leads the students to see the social structures and broader influences that impact the people in need. These immersions motivate students’ participation in their community and allow them to emerge as leaders to transform the world. In addition, they become advocates for those whom they have met.
Service to others is an integral part of the school’s philosophy of “Work, Study, Serve, Lead, Pray.” As the Saint Martin de Porres student continues to develop, she/he will attain a deep appreciation for the value of voluntary service. To foster that appreciation, Saint Martin de Porres has developed a volunteer service program. Campus Ministry recruits student volunteers on a regular basis to serve with local partners, for example, St. Philip Neri Hot meal Program, The Store Front Drop-in Center, United Cerebral Palsy, and St. Clair Superior Development Corporation. In addition to Campus Ministry, other clubs and organizations in the school include a service component in their activities. In addition to school-sponsored service, students may also be personally engaged in service to the community.
While Saint Martin does not require its students to perform a minimum number of service hours, the Campus Ministry Department tracks the service hours of all students. As students participate in volunteer service opportunities, they accumulate Christian Service hours and then submit those hours to the Campus Ministry office. Campus Ministry recognizes the achievements of Saint Martin de Porres students in their efforts of Christian Service on a regular basis.