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Posts tagged ‘mentors’

The Lessons Never End

St. Helena's Church in Blue Bell, PA

In January, Sister Margaret Naab, SHCJ (M. M. Alacoque) attended the Mass and Reception of Monsignor Joseph J. Nicolo. He was ordained in 1974. Sr. Margaret was the first woman teacher at St. Charles Seminary in Wynnewood, Pa. where her course in Christian Art was an elective in the Theology division. Monsignor Nicolo was a student in Sr. Margaret’s class and noted that he did not know how valuable the course would be for him in the remodeling of his church, St. Helena’s on DeKalb Pike in Blue Bell, Pa.

Sr. Margaret was flattered that her teaching made such an impact on Monsignor Nicolo and said, “My greatest pride and joy was that my students were able to enjoy and appreciate the artwork of others—even their fellow students. All of our works are derived from God’s creation.” Monsignor offered public praise both in his homily and at the reception.


Mentor Overcomes Shyness

Located in the Fairhill/West Kensington section of North Philadelphia, Providence Center was founded by the Sisters of the Holy Child in 1993. Working with the community, Providence Center provides educational programs and enrichment actives for adults and children.

As a high school freshman, Jaileen “Jay” worked as a teen mentor at Providence Center. Providence Center’s Teen Mentor Program hires bilingual teens—primarily Latina young women—from local high schools to work directly with the children in the Center’s After School Program, increasing the individual attention given to students. The mentors are paid a stipend for their work, which provides needed income for themselves and their families, and provides an alternative to at-risk behavior.

Looking back at her start at Providence Center, Jay admits that she was a timid young woman; she confesses that while she still maintains some of her shyness today, the Mentor Program helped her to develop confidence in herself. “I may have felt shy and like the students would not like me or listen to me. However, after being there for four years, I learned that the children looked up to me, and they do not realize how shy or nervous you are. They looked up to me as a leader, and that made me feel confident in myself. I did not realize how much help students really needed, until working at Providence Center.”

Through the program, Jay shares that she learned how to communicate. “I learned how to talk to the parents, children, and other mentors.” Jay highlights the mentor retreats as being meaningful and memorable experiences, particularly for her spirituality. “Going to retreats, my mind was cleared from other things like school, and was focused on God and my family. They reminded me to always trust in God, He is always there for us.”

This past fall, Jay started her college career at West Chester University. Although she is unsure of her major, she is leaning toward a career with children because of her experience at Providence Center.


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