Being involved is second nature for SLU student volunteer, musician

Maureen Mahon, right, played the piccolo for the pep band Nov. 12 during a St. Louis University women’s basketball game at the Chaifetz Arena. At left is Leah Fischer. Playing in the pep band is one of the Cor Jesu Academy grad’s many activities. She has received the U.S. Presidential Gold Award for volunteer service and other recognition.

St. Louis University student Maureen Mahon takes a simple approach to explaining why she is involved in so many activities.

"If you're not involved, you can't learn very much," the Cor Jesu High School graduate said. "Experience through music or volunteering can make a world of difference."

Youth Connection 24-hour helpline fills big need

Angela Tate, a provisional licensed professional counselor and supervisor at the Behavioral Health Response call center in Creve Coeur, handles her duties on a recent weekday. Behavioral Health Response is staffing the St. Louis County Youth Connection Helpline. Each counselor takes approximately 30 to 40 calls on various crises lines on a regular work shift.

The first phone call to the new St. Louis County Youth Connection Helpline was from a homeless pregnant girl in desperate need of assistance.

The 24-hour helpline, funded by the St. Louis County Children's Service Fund and a collaboration between Behavioral Health Response and Youth in Need, quickly directed the girl to a safe place and linked her to the services she needs to get housing and care for her and her unborn baby.

Followers of Christ need each other's support, Pope says

VATICAN CITY — The decision to follow Christ is not an easy one to make, so young people should look for support from the Christian community and the Church, Pope Benedict XVI said in his message for World Youth Day 2011.

"Do not believe those who tell you that you don't need others to build up your life! Find support in the faith of those who are dear to you, in the faith of the Church," the pope wrote in his message, released Sept. 3.

Free SpiritFest 2010 event for teens to take place in September

The archdiocesan Catholic Youth Apostolate's Office of Youth Ministry is sponsoring SpiritFest 2010, a day of sacraments, music, games and other fun activities for teens in the archdiocese.

The free event will take place from noon- 6p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at Camp RockyVine in Dutzow.

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson will celebrate Mass, and Confessions will be available. Featured bands include The Steubenville Band with Adam Bitter and Karl Zimmerman, the Pete Buncher Band and Soul Purpose (formerly PRAZ). Concessions will be available for purchase.

Catholic Youth Apostolate's Msgr. Meyer Youth Center full with events

Ron Litzau supervised advised Dan Appleton of Apple Valley, Minn., and Allie Dannekerof Sheboygan, Wisc., as they spruced up the Msgr. Meyer Youth Center in South St Louis July 28. Litzau is a retired maintanence worker, Dan and Allie are volunteers with Catholic Heart Workcamp, which has 400 volunteers from across the Midwest doing community improvement projects in the St. Louis area.

The pre-kindergartner having fun on the soccer field at the Msgr. Meyer Youth Center could be playing on a U.S. World Cup team someday. And the fifth-grader on the basketball court might in the future win an NCAA title for the St. Louis University Billikens.

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