My Catholic faith has given my many opportunities in my life, my favorite and most insightful has been leadership. I've had leadership opportunities in working with children at vacation Bible school and faith formation classes. I've also had leadership opportunities in the missions I've attended the past two summers.
I've taught faith formation for several years and for many different ages. My first time of teaching was for first grade summer Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (religious education), and I can't exactly say that I was prepared for the week I had. Honestly, I was surprised I made it through the week at all. But, that's when I discovered how much could be learned from teaching younger children. I learned more from attempting to answer their questions than I think they learned from me.
The next class I helped with was kindergarten. While I only planned and explained crafts, I learned a lot about having patience, because you never know what they may have problems with, even if it was the very last thing you expected. Last year, I began to teach fourth grade with my dad, and that has taught me the very most about being a good leader. Not only do you have to be able to learn as you go and have patience, you have to be able to explain your decisions and reasoning otherwise students or others are not going to care what you have to say.
Another huge leadership opportunity I've had is attending mission in New Town the past two summers. You have to have leadership while working in teams with other people your age. The leadership skill I've learned at mission is that with many different people who have many different opinions you have to be able to accept that your feelings or view on an idea isn't always the best view. In addition to that, while working with the children at camp, you have to be able to keep calm because it's always worse to overreact.
My leadership is the part of my life that my Catholic faith has most impacted. Through my church I've had many opportunities to lead or lead with others. These opportunities have made me a better person and taught me a lot about myself.
Leading others is an experience that everyone should have, and through your church is a great way to get that experience.
Monica Olson is a sophomore at Minot High School-Central Campus.