16 Sep A PERSONAL WITNESS FROM YOUTH MINISTRY
My name is Holly Kirsten Eugenio and I have been working with the Mission Jeunesse-Youth Ministry team of the Archdiocese of Montreal for the past five years. Working in Youth Ministry was not what I had originally planned as a career. I was working in the engineering field for four years when the opportunity developed, thanks to Pillars Trust Fund who committed to providing the Mission Jeunesse-Youth Ministry team with a salary for a full time position.
I had been involved in my parish for a number of years in variety of ministry settings (Choir, Youth Group, International WYD, lector, Eucharistic Minister and Pastoral Homecare etc.) I was eventually led to work as a volunteer with the DUC IN ALTUM Discernment Experience that was coordinated by the Mission Jeunesse Youth Ministry Team. The combination of participating in International World Youth Day and the Duc In Altum Discernment Experience helped me to discover that I had a mission as a lay person to serve the Church in the world. I continued to serve as I could where I could. With the offer of a full time position to join the Youth Ministry team, I started to discern the possibility of switching careers, which in my heart felt like responding to call, to a dream that had been there all along.
The decision to leave the beginning of an engineering career was not an easy one, as it meant leaving the title, prestige and financial benefits that came with it. However, Pillars Trust Funds’s generosity in offering a salary for a full time Youth Ministry worker made following my heart, and responding to God’s call a possibility.
Today I can say that it has been one of the most important decisions of my life. I have learnt to trust in God’s providence. I am using what I learned in my past work experience and have been able to develop numerous other skills. I have since completed the Canadian Certificate in Youth Ministry Studies and I am currently enrolled in the Pastoral Ministry Certificate Program at Concordia University. It has been a blessing to combine both my engineering skills and pastoral skills, and to use these gifts to serve others. Some have told me that I am like a new modern Kingdom builder!
Thanks to the Pillars Trust Fund, I am privileged to work among an amazing team of young people who love Jesus Christ and are passionate for the Mission. Together and under the direction and guidance of our director Isabel Correa, the Mission Jeunesse – Youth Ministry office is a coordination team mandated by the Archbishop of Montreal to promote in the diocese, outreach to teenagers (13-17 years old) and young adults (18-35 years old) through coordination, communication, animation and formation. We organize diocesan wide teen and young adult events, we offer support and training to local teen and young adult ministers, group leaders, and their teams, and help to co-ordinate local youth-ministry efforts, while promoting a comprehensive youth ministry vision. The Mission Jeunesse-Youth Ministry Office advocates for the place of teens and young adults in our Church and society, and promotes their contribution, and their potential in the Church and society. All diocesan events, projects and pastoral responses of the Mission Jeunesse – Youth Ministry Office are organized WITH and FOR teens, WITH and FOR young adults and youth ministers and their teams from the network.
Among these projects are:
- Diocesan World Youth Day
- International World Youth Day
- Apostles’ Cup Ball Hockey tournament
- Parish visits to support local Youth Ministry initiatives
- YOUCAT sessions
- Gathering of Youth Ministers
Counting on the grace of God, I look forward to continue serving the young people of the Archdiocese of Montreal thanks in part to the Pillars Trust Fund.