Sister Barbara Nixon heads Family Faith Formation at St. Anne Church in Byron, California. Byron is a small culturally-diverse agriculture community ‘off the beaten path’ in Contra Costa County. Sister Barbara recently implemented a Teen/Youth Outreach program, which has given middle and high school low-income students new and enriching educational opportunities.
The outreach program has two focuses. The first is to provide cultural enrichment field trips: music, art, drama, athletics, and robotics events; interfacing with people with physical limitations, experiencing religious youth conferences as well as local after-school educational classes. A recent Teen Leadership Training workshop made quite an impression. Afterward, when asked what she thought, one participant, reflected “This day, away from all the everyday noise, helped me know God is near and here for me.”
The second focus is to help expose and involve the youth in the three social justice concerns of the Sisters of the Holy Names—water, human trafficking, and immigration. All three topics are very relevant today in California. Sister Barbara plans to take the students to participate in Walk/Runs and other events addressing these issues.