Youth Minister Profile – Sarah Ziegler
My name is Sarah Ziegler and I am one of the Youth Ministers at James Sheahan Catholic High School in Orange, which is in the Bathurst diocese. I graduated Year 12 at James Sheahan last year with the completion of my HSC and am now spending my gap year in a year of mission. This year I am working alongside Will Tracey (Youth Minister) and Belinda Lee (REC: Mission) to implement effective engagement, participation and faith formation through mission in our school as well as in our wider Parish community.
Having been a student at a Catholic school, I understand and can relate to the importance of providing faith based opportunities for youth. As a student, I was eligible to take part in the CSYMA classes that were offered to Year 10 students at the time. The CSYMA classes enabled me to explore my faith with my peers through active ministry. The highlight of my CSYMA experience was being able to go out to Primary Schools around the Bathurst Diocese to facilitate retreats. When given the option to participate in active ministry, my peers and I really seized the opportunity by taking each program on board, thus allowing ourselves to be open about faith to enhance the experience for the primary school students, which in turn provided them with a powerful experience of faith through mission.
Being a part of this active ministry is an experience I’ll never forget, which is why, this year, I am striving to provide the students of James Sheahan and the youth of the wider Parish community opportunities that will lead them to active ministry. A large focus for both Will and myself this year is to encourage the youth in our school to become more actively involved with our Parish community. This focus can be seen through the Parish youth group, ELEVATE which runs every Sunday afternoon before mass. ELEVATE invites youth from Years 7-11 to gather in a safe and interactive space to explore their faith.
I am extremely grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to partake in active ministry as it has allowed me to explore my journey of faith. For the remainder of the year, I look forward to providing and guiding those who wish to explore their faith and mission with a worthwhile experience, just as I have had and continue to have.