Time for Christ: High school youth groups grow students’ faith


Natalie Martinez

Gathered around tables before small group discussion, freshman Annie McGuire and sophomore Clare Hansen distribute pens and paper to write down any questions the members may have. Each Sunday, the Holy Trinity Life Teen meets after 5 p.m. Mass.

Alena Gillespie, Web Editor-in-Chief

The 6 p.m. church bells ring. The sound of the church choir echoes as the priest processes up the middle aisle to the front entrance of the church. Some students proceed to their cars, while others walk across the street to the Father Quigley Center for youth group.
High schoolers sit around in community and eat pancakes together before they meet for a large group discussion.
For freshman Annie McGuire, this is her typical Sunday, as she is a member of Holy Trinity Life Teen. Life Teen is a Catholic youth organization in the U.S.
“It’s a great community,” McGuire said. “I get to know upperclassmen and deepen my faith with God.”
McGuire joined the group about half a year ago and is one of the 30 to 40 members.
“We get together and talk about a topic,” McGuire said. “One of our youth ministers talks, and then we get into small groups and dive deeper into it.”
Sophomores Clare Hansen and Emilia Olsen are also part of this youth group, as Olsen recently joined in November.
“Just try a youth group even if you don’t think you’ll like it because the Lord works in mysterious ways,” Olsen said.

I get to know upperclassmen and deepen my faith with God.

— Freshman Annie McGuire

Over the summer, McGuire helped put on an eighth-grade retreat, and she helped with the prep work and activities.
“It’s very enlightening,” McGuire said. “It just helps your relationship with God deepen and you get to know a lot of people.”
From attending Camp Tekakwitha every year, senior Jack Elder learned about St. Michael the Archangel Life Teen from a cabin mate and joined the August before his junior year.
“The people there are super fun people,” Elder said. “You are welcomed with open arms.”
According to Elder, this youth group offers adoration Monday and Friday nights and men’s group on Wednesday nights and Life Teen night on Sunday.
“Some of my deepest friends are from there,” Elder said. “We go to small groups and have good discussions.”
Sophomore Grace McCallop joined the Open Door youth group when she was in sixth grade and has been a member ever since.
“It’s just a refresher in my faith,” McCallop said. “It is something for you to do, and it will just benefit you in different aspects of your life.”
This Christian group meets Wednesday nights and starts with games, before time for worship and a Bible lesson.
“I look forward to the unique messages and spending time with my friends,” McCallop said.

C You in the Major Leagues, also known as C-10, was founded in 2013 by Dayton Moore, who was the Kansas City Royals general manager at the time. After applying during the end of his eighth grade year, freshman Don Carlos Alvarez joined.
“My mom got an email and told me it could help with school,” Alvarez said. “They give out scholarship funds, so it helps with my schooling and everything.”
C-10 meets every Wednesday and focuses on helping high schoolers in the Kansas City area with leadership skills for the real world.
“My favorite part is definitely the service projects,” Alvarez said.
According to Elder, there are rewarding benefits from joining a youth group.
“It is cool to have a good group of people that encourage me in my faith and that I am able to have good conversations with instead of just surface level talks,” Elder said.

With the Gospel reading in hand, math teacher Kayla Moylan leads her prayer group through an activity to better understand God’s message before Mass on Dec. 9. (Natalie Martinez)