Casting a net for Island youth

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Sponsored by seven Island churches, a new faith-based youth group for teens in grades 7 – 12 will begin meeting weekly on Sunday, September 14, from 5:30–7 pm, at the Congregational Church in West Tisbury. The goal of the youth group, to be called The Net, is to provide a safe place where teens can develop and share their faith. Character education, spiritual formation, and service to others will be the focus of the group.

Cristina Pereira, an experienced youth leader and mentor, will be the group’s leader. Ms. Pereira is a Connecticut native who has lived on Martha’s Vineyard since 2010. She is a member of The First Congregational Church of West Tisbury where she served as the church school director in 2012. Ms. Pereira has volunteered as a youth group adviser at The Fairmount Presbyterian Church in Cleveland and served with City Year Cleveland as a mentor for middle and high school students. She has taught elementary science at Greenwich Country Day School, and directed education programs and summer camp at Felix Neck and the Farm Institute. Ms. Pereira currently teaches at the Martha’s Vineyard Public Charter School.

Weekly meetings will provide opportunities for discussion, learning from one another, service projects and fun (games, events, trips, etc.). The ideas of the group’s members will be incorporated into the program.

The seven churches sponsoring this new initiative are: The Federated Church of Edgartown, The First Congregational Church of West Tisbury, Saint Andrew’s Episcopal Church, Grace Episcopal Church, Vineyard Haven Baptist Church, Trinity United Methodist Church, and The Chilmark Community Church.

The youth group will meet at the Congregational Church in West TIsbury in September, October, and November. Winter meetings will be held at The Federated Church in Edgartown, and spring meetings will held at Grace Church in Vineyard Haven. To inquire about The Net, please contact the pastor of one of the seven sponsoring churches.