Lisa Kochanowski
Assistant Editor/Reporter
September 1, 2023 // Diocese

Area Colleges Help Students Continue Their Faith Journey

Lisa Kochanowski
Assistant Editor/Reporter

Parents are the first teachers of the Faith for their children, guiding them with nightly prayer, participation in the sacraments, and attendance at weekly Mass. As young people become adults and head to college, they embark on a journey of newfound independence. Decisions about where to live, what area to study, and campus involvement are no longer made by loving parents. Neither is the decision to continue on in their faith journey. Young adults have to forge their own path and devotion to the Catholic Church, and many college and university campuses in northern Indiana offer organizations with active faith lives.

“The mission of the Newman Catholic Fellowship is to bring Christ to students of Trine, helping them strengthen their relationship to Christ and learn more about the Catholic faith,” said Peter Klee, President of the Newman Catholic Fellowship at Trine University in Angola. “I would like members to learn more about the Catholic faith and grow closer to Christ during the influential college years of their life, as well as meeting other people their age striving to strengthen their faith.”

Photos provided by Peter Klee
Students from the Newman Catholic Fellowship at Trine University pose for a picture after Mass at St. Anthony of Padua Parish in Angola.

The group has weekly meetings that include a free home-cooked meal and lively discussions on Church teachings, Scripture, or other topics related to faith. Monthly, the group joins St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church across the street from the campus for a student Mass, which is followed by pizza and fellowship.

Catholic students can attend weekly and daily Mass at St. Anthony’s, where students will sit together and socialize afterwards. Other available activities are game nights and trips to nearby Catholic locations, such as the Our Lady, Patroness of America Center in Rome City.

“On September 8 this year, Newman Catholic Fellowship is partnering with St Anthony’s for a Eucharistic procession and adoration,” Klee said. “The event will start with Mass at 6 p.m. at St. Anthony’s, followed by a procession to Trine’s Fabiani Theatre for a night of adoration and worship.” Klee added that “game nights are frequent on campus, held by members of the club. Newman Catholic Fellowship hosts an annual broomball game inside Thunder Ice Arena, Trine’s hockey stadium. Each semester, the group hosts a bake sale at St Anthony’s as a fundraiser for us.”

Students from the Newman Catholic Fellowship at Trine University in Angola pose in front of a statue of the Blessed Mother at a chapel during a visit to the Our Lady, Patroness of America Center in Rome City.

According to Klee, Newman Catholic Fellowship welcomes any Trine student, regardless of their religious beliefs. To learn more, send an email to
[email protected].

At Purdue University Fort Wayne, the Student Catholic Mastodon group is an organization that celebrates and embraces a student’s Catholic faith on campus.

The mission or goal of the group is “to bring together interested Catholic and non-Catholic students, faculty, and staff to provide opportunities for growth, prayer, workshop, and community-building,” said Alice Jordan-Miles, the group’s Faculty Adviser. The group also aims to “provide information on Catholic teachings, practices, and beliefs to interested students, faculty, and staff,” she said. 

Resources available to students include weekly Mass, monthly confession, and community gatherings. On campus, students are invited to pizza parties and movie-watching nights.

Jordan-Miles said she hopes students find an encouraging sense of community and strong support and encouragement for one’s Catholic faith while in college. Anyone interested in getting involved can contact her at [email protected] or by phone at 260-481-4184.

* * *

The best news. Delivered to your inbox.

Subscribe to our mailing list today.