Saturday, January 1, 2011

Jeanette Coury

I was fortunate to hear Dr. Christian Isichei speak at the Nativity years ago. As the Director of Youth Ministry, Chris Wesley asked Dr. Isichei to say a few words to our students during our Sunday teen crowd programs, Uprising and Resurrection. I was so moved by his passion and commitment to the Faith Alive Hospital ministry. His vision was awe inspiring and I remember looking at the faces of our teens and thinking WOW he was reaching them. He spoke about his call to serve and his deep faith that God was leading him and would help him to overcome any challenges. His talk was resonating and our teens were totally engaged, something difficult to do with that audience!

Over the years I enjoyed following our Nigeria mission trips through the message guide, emails and videos at Sunday masses. During that time, I continued to work with our teens and helped to develop a program where Nativity students could answer their call to serve - Student Impact. The vision was to create a framework to empower students to use their God given gifts, time, talents and experience to serve in the Nativity community. Today we have many teens actively working in ministry, 39 in Vacation Bible School alone!

I have wanted to expand the mission of Student Impact - deepening students faith by encouraging them to find purpose and meaning in their lives through service outside of Nativity as well. In the spring when I heard the announcement for Nativity:Nigeria I knew this was my call to serve. It became clear that I should explore this reach outside of the Nativity community and relay that work back to our teens in the fall. I hope that my work on the Home Team will inspire teens to serve God’s vision through our church, to move them from being served to servants, to shape them into more grateful people and to inspire them to become servant leaders and role models to their peers and younger children.