Prayer & Action

What is Prayer & Action? 

The Diocese of Des Moines will be hosting our first Prayer & Action mission week in 2019!  This week of faith and service will reach out to those most in need in the host community through the open hands and hearts of teen participants and their adult leaders.  Throughout the week of Prayer & Action, teens will paint, clean, do yard work, and perform other meaningful tasks for the vulnerable in our Diocese.

Participants will spend the week in an atmosphere that is free of distractions, allowing them to foster their faith, inspire charity, and lead them closer to Christ.  The experience will also allow them to get to know other teens from other parts of the Diocese, as they get to better know Jesus.

Prayer & Action sessions are run by the Prayer & Action Mission Team (pictured below), a team of college students trained and ready to lead your group in a fun and faith-filled time of service and worship.  Find out more about them here!

2019 Prayer & Action Mission Team (L-R): Megan Schraeger, Dalton Flanery, Alexa Merida-Seifer, Simon Zamani, & Sarah Davis

Check out this video of Prayer & Action in 2018 in Salina, Kansas!

When/where is Prayer & Action?

July 7th-12th, Shenandoah, Iowa

Participants will be hosted for the week at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Shenandoah

Registration & Payment

Registration for Prayer & Action is initiated online and should be done by parish youth leaders.  Click HERE for group registration.

Individual registration is available on request: email Justin White, Diocesan Director of Youth & Young Adult Ministry, to submit a request.  Individual youth will need to provide their own adult chaperone who has been Diocesan approved with a background check and Virtus safe environment training.  The adult chaperone will also need to pay the registration fee, as is the case with parish groups as well.

Registrations must be submitted by April 26th, along with a non-refundable $20 deposit per attendee (adult and teen alike) at that time, with the rest of the $80/person registration fees due by May 31st.  May 24th is the final date to drop without being invoiced for that participant.


What benefits are there in experiencing a mission trip?

A week-long mission experience can be life changing.  Although opportunities are set up to help those living in communities we serve, many times it is those of us who are doing the service that are affected the most.  In order to see God's face more clearly, it is often necessary to break free from the pressures and busy schedule of our daily lives.  This week of service allows participants to do just that.

What spiritual opportunities do the teens have during Prayer & Action?

Daily Mass, Eucharistic Adoration, Daily Rosary, meditative prayer, Liturgy of the Hours, Reconciliation, small faith-sharing groups, and dialogue with seminarians and other adults who are intentional about their faith, prayer, and vocation discernment.

Who is eligible to attend Prayer & Action?

Prayer & Action is open to all high school students, including those entering 9th grade in the Fall of 2019 and those who will have just graduated in the Spring of 2019.  If bringing a parish group, we require one adult chaperone (21 years of age or older) for every six youth participants.  Adult chaperones must be Diocesan approved by having had a background check and Virtus Safe Environment training current.

What is the cost?

The registration fee for each youth and adult participant that will be attending with your group is $80.00.  This covers the cost of food, materials, house, and programming.  A non-refundable deposit of $20 per participant is due at the time of registration.  Your deposit will be subtracted from your total registration fee.  The rest of the costs of Prayer & Action are offset by your generous donations to the Annual Diocesan Appeal.

What if a young person has little or no home repair experience?

As long as teens come with a servant's attitude, there is no problem involving them in home repair projects, as we will match projects to skills.  There is plenty of work that needs to be done which takes little to no initial skill or experience (such as painting).  Young peolpe are not asked to participate in projects they are not equipped to handle, but will be given the opportunity to learn new skills throughout the week.

How well supervised and staffed is Prayer & Action?

We take supervision and safety very seriously.  Besides the Mission Team of young adults who are present the entire summer, each group is required to bring one adult chaperone for every six young people.  The Mission Team will not involve any teen in dangerous aspects of projects, and will be solely in charge of utilizing power tools.  Every participant will be given and asked to wear protective safety gear.  To compensate for the warm weather, participants will be supplied with plenty of liquids and frequent breaks.  Home repair projects will be well-organized and prepared for.  First-Aid kits and emergency care instruction will be available at every work site, and every safety precaution is exercised.

How is transportation arranged?

Each group will have to provide their own transportation to the initial location and to and from work sites throughout the week.

Should we contact the hosting parish for more information?

No.  All questions should be directed first to Justin White.

How many chaperones do we need?

The Diocesan policy for this summer mission requires one chaperone over the age of 21 and fully Safe Environment approved for every six teens who attend.  The Prayer & Action Mission Team does NOT count towards this ratio.  All chaperones must have completed Virtus Safe Environment training and a background check through the Diocese.  If your group is made up of both female and male teens, your chaperones must be of the same ratio.

Questions, concerns, comments?  Email Justin White, Director of Youth & Young Adult Ministry.