Article by Madeline DeMarco ’18:
On Sunday, September 27 and Monday, September 28, the 15th anniversary of Founders Hollow, I had the chance to be involved in a PREP retreat at Founders Hollow, along with many other sophomores and juniors.
PREP stands for Parish Religious Education Program. In this program, we teach religious education to the younger children of the Diocese of Rockville Centre. Our trip started out with Sunday Mass, led by Father Philip in the Maria Regina Chapel at Kellenberg. During his homily, he told us that we are disciples of God, and this is our vocation as Kellenberg High School students.
When we arrived at Founders Hollow, we enjoyed some recreation time, either playing football, swimming, or boating in the pond. Little did we know, this was the beginning of our experience of working together as a strong team.
When we all gathered later in the afternoon, we started with ice breakers so that we could get to know each other. As we were playing the games, you could see how happy everyone was to be there, smiling from ear to ear. For the rest of the night, we went to a few small group activities on what it meant to be a religious educator as well as the basic tools of how to be one. Each one of us experienced some classroom setting situations, which should help us in our classes each week.
After dinner, we went outside to watch the beautiful lunar eclipse; it was amazing as everyone hung out and watched in awe. We also prayed at adoration, which was a great experience. During adoration, two teachers and a student shared their stories of faith, and everyone in the room was touched.
The next day as we concluded our retreat, we were all so ecstatic because we had such a fun time. Before we left, all of the new PREP members were inducted into the program and given a pin. Those few days on retreat we experienced many things that led to new friendships, stronger teamwork, and most importantly, a growth in faith of God. As we start our new journey of teaching religious education classes, we know that God is always with us, helping us teach His wisdom.