Marlins of Mercy: Mrs. Andrea Kowalyk


“I am one of the Pastoral Ministers at Mercy. Being a Pastoral Minister means that you organizeretreats, and the retreat program has evolved since I’ve been here. It used to be optional junior and senior year, and now it is mandatory junior year. Overall I am deciding on the theme of the retreat, the message I’m trying to get across, getting guests to come in, and organizing how the day will flow. I try to integrate a balance of fun activities as well as serious and prayerful activity. It’s important to build community between the girls by doing ice-breakers. Another thing that [my coworker, Mrs. Judi Griggs-Dennis] and I do as Pastoral Ministers is organize when Mass is going to be, get the supplies ready, make sure that we have Eucharistic ministers and lectors, change up the music, and call priests asking to fill in.

Another thing that goes through our office is daily prayer, so we have girls that sign up to say prayerevery morning, but I also look at it as my job to put our faith into our everyday lives at school. [Anyone who is interested in saying prayer] can come to our office to chat and sign up on a calendar. Since I’ve been here, I’ve really tried to amp up the Advent and Lent seasons with a theme or focus for girls to make it more real in their lives. I also listen to girls vent and see them through the tough times. I love what I do, and it is an extension of who I am.”