God called me to youth ministry in an intense and radical way!

Photo above from www.netministries.com.au

Perceiving a call to youth ministry, Peter spent the last year on Mission with NET ministries, evangelizing young people to encounter Christ. We’re excited to have him back in Perth and asked him to share about his experience. Here’s what he had to say:

Q. What have you been doing? What does mission year entail?
This year I served on NET Ministries, which is a Catholic peer to peer youth ministry that puts into action the Church´s mission to evangelize and disciple young people. At the beginning of the year I flew to Brisbane with 40 other young Catholics from around the world, including places like Canada, America, Ireland and Hungary, and received 6 weeks of youth ministry training. We were then separated into teams, and each team went to a different part of Australia.
My team served at Mazenod College, a secondary all-boys Catholic school in Melbourne. Our job was to evangelize and disciple the students, which we did by running RE classes, youth groups, prayer experiences, attending school events and simply being an active presence around the school.

Q. Why did you do a mission year?
I chose to serve on NET because I thought God was calling me to youth ministry in an intense and radical way. I first heard about NET last year in December and felt a strong impulse to apply. Without really knowing what I was getting into I put in an application, and was accepted ten days before I flew out to Brisbane.

Q. What was the highlight?
There are so many highlights, but I would say the chance to live on a team of young Catholics, each of us very different but all working for a common goal and seeking to serve Christ is definitely up there. Aside from the many enjoyable moments we had together, living in a small, up-building team which sees you at your best and your worst, and is always there to support you and push you onwards and upwards has been one of the most rewarding aspects of NET.

Q. What was difficult?
Serving on a NET team is a different and intense experience, almost comparable to the religious life. It also goes for over ten months, and so naturally, there were many trying moments during the year. I found ministry to be difficult sometimes, and sometimes team life was difficult also. However, most of the time I very much enjoyed myself, and enjoyed tackling the difficult moments as they came.

Q. What did you learn?
I learned plenty of ministry skills including confidence up the front, how to give a talk or testimony, how best to run games and activities, how to organize and run events, working in a team, leadership skills and much more. Being in a professional working environment at the school has also taught me a lot about conduct, discipline, and hard work.

Q. Did you do anything embarrassing?
There was one time I stuffed my shirt full of other shirts and pretended to be a muscly man from Sweden. I am very grateful the year 5 students we were with at the time found it funny.

Q. Did you meet anyone interesting/famous?
Being in Melbourne, and involved in youth ministry, we got to go to many different Catholic events and meet some great people, including Jason Evert, Christopher West and Steve Angrisano.

Q. How have you changed?
Life on NET is a great place to take a step out of “ordinary” life, routine and habits and to develop some new ones. But most importantly, it is a great place to foster a relationship with Jesus. The faith becomes very real when you preach it every day and when you are surrounded by a team who gently urge you to live it every day. Jesus confronted me many times this year about who I was, who HE was, and what I believed and practiced. I can say that I’m now ten more months down the road with Him, and better prepared to go the whole distance.

Q. Would you recommend the experience to others?
Absolutely. If you’re not sure what you’re doing next year, or you want to get involved in youth ministry, or you feel called by God to a year of mission, then I encourage you to get in touch with NET Ministries. If you want to know more then get in touch with me, I’ll be more than happy to talk to you about it.

Want to here more about NET?
Contact Peter – matthyspej@gmail.com
Or visit NET’s website – http://www.netministries.com.au/

peterPeter is a man of many hobbies, all of which he approaches with full enthusiasm and passion. Singer. Fixie rider. Fruit and vegetable enthusiast. Unable to go past a great price per kilo, Peter has been known to ride home with a watermelon or pumpkin on his handle bars. He’s particularly passionate about his Catholic faith, has served as a youth leader in his parish youth group, and spent the last year volunteering with NET ministries, helping young people to encounter Christ.