Mentorship program at St. Margaret's, San Antonio

Two years ago St. Margaret's, San Antonio, began a mentor program for youth in the eighth through 12th grades under the leadership of Tonya McAlexander, pairing each child with an adult in the parish based on a survey that revealed similar interests and prayerful consideration. The adult serves as the mentor, and first and foremost, the pair pray for each other.

stmargaretssa-mentor-program-group.jpgThe mentor also attends extracurricular activities and events in the child's life. Through the program, each child receives another adult, outside of family members, to whom they can reach out and depend on.

In the group picture (left to right) is Haddie Hill; her mentor, Barbara Baugh; and Barbara's other mentee, Bryanne Weathersby. Max Trillian's mentee Emory Hill was absent from church the day of the picture, but Emory recently visited Max in the hospital after he had surgery. Ed Bierschenk helps his mentee, Samantha Benne (not pictured) with her DECA competitions. And pictured on the far right is Kate Benee (holding baby Sammie Sweet) and her mentor Laura McWhirter.

Each mentor-mentee pair is unique and meets as they are able. On Youth Sunday at St. Margaret's, held this past Sunday, May 20, the mentorship program was honored and prayed for by the congregation. Scholarship money was also distributed to high school seniors that was raised at the church's annual pumpkin patch, and the youth served in all the leadership roles of the morning.

As a mother of five children, Gretchen Benne places great value on the mentorship program. "This program is super important to me. The more Christian adults intervening in my children's lives, the better we all will be," she said.

stmargaretssa-mentor-program-pair.jpgPictured to the right is Laura McWhirter and Kate Benne after a Reagan High School track meet. Laura attends Kate's soccer games and track meets.

Submitted by Gretchen Benne.