In 2008, NET alumni Josh Madruga (10-11) and the late Jonathan Sanchez (06-07) longed for a Catholic community similar to what they had when serving with NET. Their desire sparked an idea to create ARMEE Ministries (Adoration, Reconciliation, Mass, Eucharist, Evangelization) in Turlock, California. After Jonathan’s death in 2010, his siblings (and NET alumni) Bianca (08-09) and Eryk (10-11) Sanchez joined Josh as leaders of the ministry. Read more
“NONE OF US LABOR FOR PERISHABLE CROWNS, BUT FOR THE IMPERISHABLE CROWN OF HEAVEN AND EVERLASTING LIFE IN JESUS CHRIST.” Dan Dematte
Two years ago Dan Dematte asked me to help lead an all male high school senior retreat. I was excited to help because Dan has an incredible ability to think of out-of-the-box and borderline insane activities that always turn out to be surprisingly effective evangelization tools.
Within minutes of the seniors arriving at the retreat site, we had them complete a 7-stage physical circuit called the Cardinal Games, which should have been more accurately called the “CrossFit Games.” Read more
If you’re anything like me, you spend all sorts of time thinking about who you want to love you. As in, I want her to love me. Or her. Or her. Mostly because they look good, among other things. What I don’t spend as much time on is how I want to be loved.
Why does that matter? When I sign up for someone in particular to love me, I am also signing up for the way that particular person loves. For instance, when someone says (or sings) “Love Me Like You Do,” we all know what sort of love we’re talking about. Read more
She had it all: beautiful and brainy, a track star at an Ivy League school, supportive parents, well-liked by her peers, and an Instagram account that boasted successes and happy smiles. Yet in an instant, she was gone. Her suicide was a shock to everyone who knew her. Her mom remembers looking at a photo on her feed and saying, “Madison, you look like you’re so happy.”
“Mom,” Madison said. “It’s just a picture.”
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” -Hebrews 11:1
If you look at the definition of “faith” in a dictionary, you would find this:
- Confidence of trust in a person or thing
- Belief that is not based on proof
- Belief in God or in the doctrines or teachings of a religion
If you ask a NET team member to look at this definition, the words don’t even begin to describe this great gift that God has given to us. As NET team members, our faith has been formed, tested, stretched, and has grown tremendously throughout the year. As our missionary year comes to an end, we can look back at the ways our faith has changed.
Final greetings from Team 11! The entire team is flabbergasted at the slow realization that our year on the road is actually going come to a close very soon. We are amazed that we not only hit the three digit mark on how many retreats we have done, but by the end of our year we will have done over 125 retreats! We have also been blessed to have traveled through a total of 20 states.
Wow! We can’t believe that we are about to end our year serving with NET. All of our experiences have been unforgettable, and we are all preparing our hearts to leave New Ulm. We are leaving this school knowing that we have done all that God wanted us to do here.
In the past few weeks we have done a lot. Here are some of the exciting things that we have done:
Greetings from NET Team 6
We are writing to you from Maryland (and the cherry blossoms are beautiful!). We have also been spending a lot of time in New Jersey and serving multiple dioceses there. Many churches are getting ready for the sacrament of Confirmation and we have been busy giving their religious education class retreats in order to prepare them for their special day. We also get an opportunity to meet and stay with Elizabeth’s family in upstate New York for a night. God is good!
“Glory be to Him, whose power working in us can do infinitely more than we could ever ask or imagine,” Ephesians 3:20.
This bible verse has been the anthem of our time at Providence Academy. The Lord has surpassed our expectations in so many ways this year. For this final blog post, we have a ‘litany of thanksgiving’ and some student testimonies: Read more
Hello from NET Team 2!
After Easter we headed down to the Diocese of Venice, Florida for a weekend retreat with 110 high schoolers. During the retreat we witnessed many young people coming to know the love of Christ for the first time and seeking out ways to grow in their relationship with Him. Our team was privileged to be able to share what had been helpful in our own lives in leading us deeper into prayer. This was an exhausting weekend but we didn’t leave empty handed! To close the retreat, we were joined by Bishop Frank Dewane who celebrated Mass and encouraged us to keep running the race. It’s these little moments of grace that keep us going on the road in our daily call to holiness.
As this year is coming to a close, I thought it only appropriate that we, NET Team 7, disclose to those of you who have been following our adventures some of the important things we have learned from NET.
“Beloved, let us love one another; for love is of God, and he who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God; for God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent His only Son into the world, so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God but that He loved us, and sent his Son to be the expiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” 1 John 4:7-11
“We have this hope as an anchor for our souls, sure and steadfast, a hope that enters into the inner shrine behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf!” -Hebrews 6:19-20
Happy Easter season to each and every one of you!! Our time of sorrow is through, and it is time to celebrate the fact that Jesus is risen from the dead, Alleluia! We have been working hard here in the Twin Cities day after day to relentlessly pursue the young people of this area and bring them to a greater knowledge of Christ. Between retreats, NET nights (nights with the St. Joseph’s middle school in West St. Paul, MN), Lifelines, Gatherings, and DOXA Events (nights of adoration with praise and worship), we are well over 100 retreats/ministry days. Read more
In New Ulm, MN, we finally are able to go outside again with the students. It is really nice to go on walks outside with students or play Frisbee or football. Spring sports are also starting and we are all excited to watch softball and baseball games in nice weather. Read more
We have officially put on over 100 retreats. God is so good! It is mind blowing to our entire team that we have made it to the three digit mark. Time has gone by too quickly. We are savoring each moment that we still have left. There have been so many graces received and given this year. During this time of the year, our team is especially in need of the Lord’s graces, as it is easy to become tired and think too much of how quickly the year will come to an end. As our time with NET slowly winds down, we have been focusing especially on finishing the race strong. It is hard to comprehend that we have served with NET for 8 months already and only have a month left. As a team we are striving to keep our mission in the forefront, knowing that there are still so many youth that need to hear the truth and be told that they are loved by an awesome God. Read more
In the last month, Team 2 has visited Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, and Alabama, where we’ve been welcomed by generous host families and parish contacts. We have now done 87 retreats. In the midst of retreats, our team was given the opportunity to take a day out for our own retreat put on for us by NET alumna Stephanie, who encouraged us not to give up on our daily call to holiness, even in the midst of trial. Read more
As the NET year is coming to a close we are starting to reflect on what the Lord has blessed us with this year while serving him on a parish team in Chanhassen Minnesota. Team 8 would like to let you all know the main thing that the Lord has taught each of us this year. I think we can all say that whether in big or small ways, serving with NET this year has changed our lives forever and we would like to tell all of you how God has worked in our hearts and lives this year. Thank you for all of your prayers and support.