Ministry supports students in deepening their relationship with God
through retreats, liturgies, prayer, community service, and spiritual
direction. St. Mary's Academy's mission and roots are in the Catholic
Church and offer each young woman, through Campus Ministry and service
activities, the opportunity to explore and to develop her spiritual
values and her personal relationship with God. Students of all faiths
have a home here. Time for reflection, special masses, and prayer
services are part of regular school life. Many students become
involved in the Campus Ministry and Service (CMS) Team planning
community liturgical celebrations, service projects, environment focused
projects and retreats. The CMS Team earns .25 credit per semester
for this work.
Liturgies are held monthly throughout the school year to allow
students the opportunity to pray together, to celebrate religious holy
days, St. Mary’s Founders’ Day and special occasions. Attendance at
these liturgies is required and students are expected to dress
up. Students have the option to participate in a weekly liturgy. CMS
students assist the Campus Minister in planning the all-school and
Freshmen Immersion Retreat:
In the fall, all freshmen participate in a one day homeless immersion
with their TA. Students learn about issues of homelessness by
engaging in dialogue with their peers and with people who live on the
street. This immersion experience is an excellent way to help students
become educated about poverty and social justice through experiences
and conversation. Reflection on the experience helps students focus on
the needs of others and examine their own values and perceptions.
In the spring, the sophomore class spends 24 hours together off-campus
to reflect on who they are, who they are becoming as a member of the
St. Mary’s community and their place in the community. The day is
filled with prayer, reflection, dialogue, fun and sharing.
Two encounter retreat experiences are held each year, one is held in
November and one in February. Each Encounter is 2 ½ days and is held
off-site. Juniors have the option to participate in one of the
encounters. Through prayer, reflection and large and small group
sharing, students focus on their relationship with self, family,
friends, their classmates and God.
One senior metanoia (retreat) is held each year in the spring. This
weekend experience is a wonderful opportunity for seniors to reflect on
their time at St. Mary’s, their relationships, and preparation for
their move to life after high school.
The Office of Campus Ministry works to foster the
mission of St. Mary's Academy by sponsoring activities that support
faith, spirituality and the development of young women.
Campus Ministry & Service (CMS) Team is a group of students
whose focus is the art of pastoral ministry and its application in
prayer, worship, faith-sharing and community service in the life of SMA
students. Members of CMS earn .25 credit per semester as a religion
Community Service Program, a tradition at St. Mary's Academy, aims to
foster a life-long commitment to serving others. While SMA does not
have a yearly requirement, it is highly encouraged. The Community
Service Coordinator matches the students' interests and skills with the
needs in the community. Currently, the following individual and group
opportunities for service are available:
- "Friends Across Generations" through Friendly House
- Christmas Luncheon for the Elderly
- Christmas giving through TA
- Food and Clothing Drives, including the Sister Shawn Marie Barry Drive in April
- Emergency relief drives and other service projects as they emerge throughout the year.
- Immersion Opportunities:
- Frosh Immersion, fall
- Rural Immersion, fall
- Homeless Immersion, spring
- Los Embajadores, Portland Plunge, summer
- Many other service opportunities are available throughout the year and are posted for all students
Students involved in the Campus Ministry
and Service (CMS) Team plan many of these projects and encourage their
classmates to participate. Juniors may take a Social Justice class or
seniors may take a theology class related to the work of the CMS team,
which also involves leadership training. More information is contained
in the course catalog.
For more information on St. Mary's Academy service, click here.