CIA (Catholics In Action)

My FI and I are team leaders for Lifeteen this year and we are responsible for choosing activities for our “small” group (21 kids!) that can be done after Mass between 6:15 - 7:45 pm on Sunday night. The service nights are called CIA nights, or Catholics In Action. While we think it’s a great concept, we’re having a hard time thinking of service activities that can be done at that time. We need to come up with ideas for 4 nights, and the Youth Director wants us to help people as much as possible. We have these ideas so far:

  1. Zip Up - We serve dinner at a soup kitchen and everyone brings in an old coat to donate afterwards.

  2. Potluck Offerings - Each teen brings a (prearranged) non-perishable food item and after Mass we head to a team leader’s house, cook a meal together and then drop it at a local firehouse.

  3. Can You Feel The Love - We make “Valentine’s Day” cards (although not necessarily near Valentine’s Day) and bring to a senior center or hospital.

  4. Smell The Roses - We all pitch in a few bucks and buy several small bouquets from Kroger to bring to people in the hospital who haven’t had many visitors.

  5. Dead Letter - We write thank you notes for our local post office workers and leave them in our mailboxes so the postal worker gets them the next day on his/her route.

  6. Windshield Vandals - We write small notes, “Have a great day!”, "May God Bless you!” etc. and leave them on cars parked at Kroger or Wal-Mart, etc.

  7. Cartastrophe - We split up in teams and run around local grocery stores and shopping centers returning rogue carts from the parking lots back to the corrals.

  8. Drive Thru Bandits - Drive around to various fast food restaurants around town and head through the drive thru window, offering to pay for the car behind us.

  9. It’s On Me - Each teen brings in 2 - 5 dollars in quarters and we ration them out into different denominations and leave them at payphones, Laundromats, and vending machines around town.

They’re all very “random acts of kindess” and not very “community service” - we’d appreciate any more ideas!!

You wonderful persons!
How delightful to know there are leader and young people like yourselves who have given so much thought and preparation to how you can live the gospel as genuine Catholic Christians.

Whatever you do for anyone you do for Jesus. Jesus tells us this in Matthew 25 verses 31-40

Hopefully other people will take inspiration to do as you young people are doing. Thank you for sharing your wonderful program with us.

May God flood great graces in each of your lives and to those to whom you show kindness.

Thank you dear child of God

Would you consider going to Planned Parenthood to pray the Rosary an act of kindness?

Or even going to Adoration and saying the Rosary for the end to abortion?

How about sending Christmas cards to senior citizens?

Collecting canned goods and blankets for the food bank?

You could also plan to meet somewhere at a different time to do something.It doesn’t have to be on Sunday after Mass,does it?

I coordinate 7&8th. graders and sometimes we make plans to meet on a different time and day.

Thanks for the ideas!

We have the option of meeting at another time, but that means arranging my, my FI, and 21 kids’ schedules! The last thing we want to do is leave a teen out because he/she has a prior commitment. Sunday nights after Mass are when we meet weekly for LifeTeen, so the teens all have that block of time free. I’d like to try and keep the times they way they are, hence why I’m having trouble thinking of activities for face-to-face community involvement.

Aww, thanks for the encouragement, Trishie!

You might want to rethink these. Six and eight might freak out people and make them think there is a stalker or something after them.

Seven many places hire people to round up carts, you could end up costing people there job.

Some suggestions. Have them find the most picked on kids at there schools and say the rosary for them AND makin an active effort to befriend them.

Reach out to the friendless in there generation and not just to make them convert.

Maybe organize a Catholic Club on campus before and after school.

If they play online maybe start a sort of ministry in there games helping people out or something (Hey we got the net so use it!)

Thanks for the suggestions!

Your weolcome it’s from a personal experiance when I learned the true with a group trying to convert me (Was Pagan at the time)

After yet another debate over why I was wrong not to follow Christ (I couldn’t move around campus without those half the time) I thinked the person for at least carring.

I was then told this wasn’t because they cared about me, in fact they’d rather I not be in Heaven but as I am the only non-Christian they know they got to try and convert me because one more convert and the youth group would get a sky trip (Well the richer members would).

Just a thought - anything - ANYTHING - you can do in a nursing home is a lot more than anybody else is doing. Especially for the confused and dementia patients who rarely get visitors. Sometimes family doesn’t even visit because they think Mom or Dad isn’t really “there” anymore. It’s not pretty, and often it doesn’t smell very good, but that’s an opportunity for you to teach and kids to learn. More than anything, these folks just need a little attention and touch; often the only voices they here and the only touch they feel is clinical. They’re about as 'outcast" as you can get.

I’ll second that. I used to work on an ambulance and the sadness I saw in nursing homes was almost more than I could bear. Now, my wife is an nursing aide in one and the stories she tells bring me to tears.

We pray for the people there and I encourage everyone to do the same.


Good advice, thanks. We’re working on going to the VA for our next CIA night, but we’ll call around to some nursing homes, too. Yesterday was our first CIA night and one group lead BINGO at a Senior Center.

We found ourselves in a predicament yesterdat (long story …) and decided, last-minute, to go pick up trash at the greenway (a 4.5 mile trail that follows a river here in town) for an hour. The kids all had a great time, and we got a lot of the park cleaned up!

Thanks to everyone for the suggestions - keep 'em coming!

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