Sarah Alford and Courtney Cremerius recently received the St. Timothy Award from the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry for outstanding support and service in their own parish youth ministry programs and in their participation in diocesan youth ministry programs. No more than two of these awards are presented annually, one form each deanery in the diocese. Alford received the award for the Jackson Deanery and Cremerius received the award for the Memphis Deanery.
Alford, a graduating senior from Dresden High School and a member of St. Jude Church in Martin, has been an active member of the youth group since her 8th grade year. She became a TIM (Teen in Ministry) during her sophomore year and has participated in many diocesan events as well as parish events. She has regularly attended youth events including the Diocesan Youth Celebration, SEARCH, Grace at the Trace and the National Catholic Youth Conference (NCYC) throughout her years in the youth group. She served as a youth ambassador at NCYC in 2015. She has attended Catholic Heart Work Camp three times and will go again this summer. On the parish level, this young lady is a senior altar server and serves in other liturgical role when needed. She has assisted in P.R.E. classrooms and helps with parish events. In her nomination, it said, “She is a motivated and responsible individual who is serious about her spiritual life. She does not shy away from her faith, even when there are no other Catholics in her school, which was the case her senior year.”
Cremerius, a graduating senior from St. Benedict at Auburndale High School and a member of St. Louis Church in Memphis, has been a very dedicated member of the youth program at St. Louis. She has been very active in the SEARCH retreat program as a participant, a table leader and ultimately as a co-director, serving as a leader and promoter of the program, always encouraging her peers to take advantage of every opportunity to deepen their relationship with Christ. With the St. Louis group, she has attended Catholic Heart Work Camp for three years, serving people who are brokenhearted, neglected and marginalized. At St. Benedict, she is the president of the schools’ Make-A-Wish chapter, in addition to serving as the Senior Service Project Chair where she coordinated her class’s service project to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in honor of a fellow classmate. In her nomination, it said, “Courtney is proud of her faith and is not ashamed to show it and talk about it. She is a shining example for both her peers and for adults.”