Team 13: Building on Rock

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“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house upon the rock; and the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat upon that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock.” – Matthew 7: 24-25

Hey y’all! This is Team 13 coming to you from St. Mark the Evangelist Catholic Church in Plano, Texas. Our team has been in Plano for just under one month now, but we already are starting to feel like Texans. Host families taken us to “Texan places” like Whataburger and Taco Bueno, and we also won’t deny that our team has also started letting a few “y’all”s slip during team time and ministry.

Speaking of ministry, our team has been able to dive in at St. Mark’s since the first week we arrived. As a team, we help lead middle school and high school faith formation sessions, host hangout time in our youth house, have open ministry with youth in the parish, and basically just do anything we can to support our amazing youth minister, Megan. Read more

What (is) an Extraordinary Synod! 3 basic questions to know and share

Posted on by NET MINISTRIES in 2014-2015, The Church | Comments Off


1. Synod is such a weird word. But it just means council, meeting, or assembly, right?

Basically. A synod is a meeting of bishops and other invited but relevant peeps. There are two synods planned or underway, one in 2014 and one in 2015, covering the topic of “The Pastoral Challenges of the Family in the Context of Evangelization.” The purpose of the 2014 extraordinary synod and the 2015 regular synod is not to make any definitions, but to discuss and apply pastoral approaches to already existing problems. That means you won’t see any new announcements of doctrine. Read more

Team 2: Meet the Team

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Greetings from Team 2 in Wisconsin, home of cheese, the Green Bay Packers, and the National Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe! We’ve just arrived in the Diocese of La Crosse after serving in the wonderful Diocese of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where we stayed on a farm, in trailers and cabins, and in some beautiful host homes.

Leading retreats has been a great opportunity for us to grow together as a team as we all learn how to utilize each other’s strengths through them. By doing this we’ve been able to have some great encounters with the young people that we’re ministering to. On overnight retreats our team has had the chance to build stronger relationships with the retreatants, enabling us to lead them closer to Christ. One of the girls from our first overnight retreat was impacted by the message of Jesus’ resurrection and God’s love so profoundly that a few days after her retreat, she traveled to where our team had moved on to just to deliver a thank you card saying that her life had been changed because of the deeper relationship with Christ that she had said yes to on her NET retreat! Read more

I Wish That I Could Be Like The Cool Kids, ‘Cause They Seem To Fit In

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For six and a half years, I worked in a library. Learning to work hard, efficiently, and quickly, I spent hours organizing books of all shapes and sizes, and shelving them in certain places based upon the personality sandwiched between the binding. The information contained inside gave value to the outside, determining its worth and place on the shelf. Each book had its place, and in this place it belonged.

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Team 10: Welcome NET Team

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Hello to all! How great it is to be able to communicate this upcoming year with you all. We are getting along great here in New Ulm, MN. All the students are very welcoming to us. Everyone has an open heart and is very willing to hear God’s word.

When we first got here, sisters from the Handmaids of the Heart of Jesus gave us took a tour of Cathedral High School, home of the greyhounds. The school is three stories tall and right next the the Cathedral. It was really heartwarming to see our NET room decorated with signs that said, “Welcome NET Team!” One of the signs read, “Willkommen 2 R skewl. Luv the Jrs.” They sure are funny. Our room also has two couches, a projector, a mini fridge, a microwave, a snack cabinet, and lots of other places for storage. We’re living the dream here! Read more

Team 8: Chill, Cuz J.I.L.

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Greetings from Team 8! We are writing from St. Hubert’s Catholic Church in Chanhassen, Minnesota. We arrived here on September 14th and were greeted by the parish priest and high school youth minister with enthusiasm and joy! In fact, everyone at this parish is so incredibly welcoming and excited for us to serve. At first this this excitement was slightly overwhelming but we quickly saw the beauty in this energy. The parishioners aren’t just excited for us to be here but they are excited for the work that God will be doing through us this year. They had our team picture posted in the church lobby weeks before we arrived and by the time we got there some parishioners had already memorized our names. Needless to say, we felt right at home very quickly.

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Team 7: Unexpected Blessings and Trials

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Greetings from NET Team 7, currently in the Diocese of Toledo in northern Ohio! It has been such a blessing to serve here in all of the different communities. We have met incredible people, heard amazing stories in host homes and on retreats, and had the honor of praising in some absolutely stunning churches. In just one week in Ohio we have given retreats in five different cities. There has been some sickness about, but everyone is doing their best to take their daily Vitamin C and power through. It has been a whirlwind of ministry as well as unexpected blessings and trials.

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Team 11: On the Road to Heaven

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“Team 11 on the road to Heaven!” is a motto we have fondly adopted as our own. Team 11 is a traveling retreat team for NET Ministries. The first half of our ministry year we will be traveling through Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, and Indiana. On our team we have 12 members: 6 men and 6 women. Each are incredible individuals on fire for Christ and their faith.

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Team 1: Stand in the Presence of Christ

Posted on by NET MINISTRIES in 2014-2015, Team 1, The Teams | Leave a comment

01_OCTBG“Preach the Word, be urgent in season and out of season, convince, rebuke, and exhort, be unfailing in patience and teaching…always be steady, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.”-2 Timothy 4:2,5 (RSV)

Its only been a little over a week since we as NET Team 1 have officially been on the road, but it has been one of the longest and most fruitful weeks we have experienced in our lives. After 5 weeks of training in West St. Paul, MN, we have been “pushed out” of the NET Center and into the world (although being on the home team means that we get to go back a couple of times a week). Being on the home team brings many blessings that not many teams have the opportunity to experience.

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Wasting time With God

Posted on by NET MINISTRIES in 2014-2015, The World | Leave a comment


I had a professor in college who would start the year by explaining to us that it would be a colossal waste of time to complete the workload for the class. To give you an idea, our average workload per session was around forty pages of reading, followed by an intense re-reading, and one final reading to take notes for the following discussion the next day.

Ever since this philosophy class ended, I have yet to strike up any quick conversations about the differences between descriptive and revisionary metaphysics. In fact, there are very few topics from those classes that I can honestly say I’ve even thought about since those days.

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It’s Youth Group Season

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It’s youth group season! All summer, youth ministers throughout the United States have planned and strategized their youth group kick-off in the hopes of grabbing the attention of that high school student who managed to avoid youth group all last year, while continuing to reach those teens who have already made the commitment to live for Christ.

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Fall Training Tweets

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“God entrusts to you a particular role to play in his work on earth.”  

 - Mark Berchem, NET Founder and Exec. Director

“Men tend to be naturally passionate, but this passion must be directed and purified.” 

- Fr. Emmanuel, CFR Vocations Director

“The great tragedy of human history was the concept of not having to obey.” 

- Matt Reiswig, NET Assistant Program Director

“Who is going to win the struggle today? Whose will is it going to be? Yours or God’s?”

- Fr. Fred Gaglia, long time friend of NET

“A week praying and celebrating the Sacraments with NET Ministries is a great way to refill the heart & soul of a priest. God bless the teams.”

- Fr. Chris Shocklee, NET Alum

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Mosquitoes: Redemptive Insects

Posted on by NET MINISTRIES in 2014-2015, Reflections | Leave a comment



Mosquitoes: Unexpected Examples of Faith

Mosquitoes–perhaps the most annoying part of creation–will continue this fall season to pester, disturb, tease, and seemingly attack anyone outdoors when the sun begins to sink. The initial poke of the mosquito’s syringe, or in scientific terms “proboscis,” is often undetected. Once our senses flare, the instant reaction is to smack the source of the sting with the hopes of tying to kill the relentless mosquito. Without bug spray, this typical series of events could perpetuate 10-15 times, involving many other mosquitoes until the all too common question of “Why do mosquitoes exist?” is asked. Read more

2014-2015 Fall Routes

Posted on by NET MINISTRIES in 2014-2015, Parish Teams, Team 1, Team 10, Team 11, Team 12, Team 13, Team 14, Team 2, Team 3, Team 4, Team 5, Team 6, Team 7, Team 8, Team 9 | Comments Off

 “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

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I Feel It In My Bones: Why Catholics Confess

Posted on by NET MINISTRIES in 2013-2014, Reflections, Staff Blog | Leave a comment

Picture this: it’s Saturday morning, you’re watching “SportsCenter” or “Say ‘Yes’ to the Dress” or insert your favorite show here; you’ve FINALLY made it. It’s the weekend, and let’s be honest, it was a rough week. It is time for some relaxation. You’ve earned it, right? Then as suddenly and unexpectedly as Katniss Everdeen shooting the apple out of the pig’s mouth, your mom says from the kitchen, “You know, I thought this evening we would all go to CONFESSION.” The Imagine Dragons provide the inspiration for the thought now going through your head, “I feel it in my bones, enough to make me systems BLOW.” The word alone makes your spine tingle; you’d rather do ANYTHING BUT! You think to yourself, “I don’t want to sit in front of a priest and tell him all my sins. Why do I have to do that anyway?”

That’s a good question; why do we have to go to a priest to receive forgiveness for our sins? I mean, didn’t Jesus already take away our sins by dying on the cross? We hear it in scripture, “He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his stripes we are healed.” (Isaiah 53:5) “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29) So wasn’t that enough? Why do we have to go to the sacrament of Reconciliation to receive forgiveness for our sins? Read more

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