Day retreat encourages girls as they prepare for college

April 5, 2016 by

Sister Janet Lander leads a discussion with the 15 Sacred Heart High School seniors taking part in a daylong retreat at the Nazareth Motherhouse today.

Sister Janet Lander leads a discussion with the 15 Sacred Heart High School seniors taking part in a daylong retreat at the Nazareth Motherhouse today.

The adjustment to college can be difficult, two university women told a room full of girls just a couple of years younger than themselves.

Both talked about their own experiences, and struggles, but summed up their talks with encouragement.

Tracie Thibault offered a litany of fears the 15 girls may have as they think about graduating from Sacred Heart next month and then heading to college: “not finding fabulous friends,” “not meeting Mr. Right,” “not getting in an honor society,” “sinning and feeling like you’re falling away from the Catholic church…” But after each statement, the Kansas State University student added, “That’s not a tragedy.”

The tragedy, she said, would be not coming back to the church and the values and standards they believe in.

“Until my freshman year in college,” Thibault said, “I knew about God, but I didn’t know God.”

Molly Schmidt, a Glasco, Kan., native who is now attending the University of Kansas, agreed that having a deep personal conversion experience dramatically changed her college life. She talked about her own struggle to find happiness through college activities, and a growing dissatisfaction and depression about the decisions she was making. Then a mentor urged her to develop her own maturing relationship with Jesus, and to find peace and happiness in him.

Every spring the Sisters of St. Joseph host the senior girls from the Catholic High School in Salina. This year the program was organized by Sisters Janet Lander and Marilyn Wall. Also on hand were two parents plus Sister Pauline Kukula, who has taught at Sacred Heart for decades, and Sacred Heart staff members Liz Carney and Janette Gilchrist.

In addition to prayer, meditation and discussion, the girls also toured the historic Nazareth Motherhouse and then joined the sisters who live here for lunch.

The annual visit by the girls getting ready to graduate from Sacred Heart is designed to be a fun day out of the classroom while encouraging them to think about challenges they may face as they leave high school.

 

Comments

Feel free to leave a comment...