Volunteers Come Together to Share Talents, Build Faith

By Katrina Marshall ’09
Communications Coordinator, St. Norbert Abbey 

Three new Norbertine Volunteers have joined the Norbertine Volunteer Community (NVC) for 2013-2014. Bryan “Henry” Njoroge, Katie Riesterer and Katie Stiel all hail from different parts of the nation and even the world, but these young adults have come together to live in community for a year of service and to grow in faith in Green Bay, WI.

Bryan "Henry" Njoroge
Bryan “Henry” Njoroge

Njoroge, originally from Nairobi, Kenya, in East Africa, has spent several years volunteering in a variety of locations across the globe, including Tanzania, Ethiopia, South Africa, Peru, his home country of Kenya and the United States. A desire for more volunteer work led him to the NVC. As a Norbertine Volunteer, Njoroge will be working in the chaplain’s office sponsored by Brown County Jail Ministries, Inc., which serves the Brown County Jail and Juvenile Detention Center. When asked why he chose to work in this particular field, he replied, “I wanted to help more youth after coming from a poor community back in Kenya.” Njoroge also hopes to learn more about the Norbertines during his time in Green Bay…as well as the Packers football team!

Katie Riesterer
Riesterer, from nearby Grimms, WI, will be teaching 5–8th grade language arts at St. Thomas More School in Green Bay, WI, which is part of the Green Bay Area Catholic Education System (GRACE). This site is a perfect fit for her, as she is a recent graduate of St. Norbert College, De Pere, WI, with a major in Middle Childhood/Early Adolescent Education and a minor in language arts. As a Norbertine Volunteer, Riesterer will not only be a full-time teacher with her own classroom, but she will also be providing aid to a Catholic school that would otherwise have had to make budget cuts in its language arts program.
Katie Stiel
Katie Stiel

Stiel, of Franklin, TN, graduated from Middle Tennessee State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology. She learned about the NVC through the Catholic Volunteer Network’s directory. “I loved the Norbertine Volunteer Community’s variety of internships offered and values they behold,” said Stiel. As a Norbertine Volunteer, Stiel will be assisting with the American Foundation of Counseling Services Foster Care Program, for which she will serve as a mentor and supply life skill lessons to youth ages 10 to 18. “Providing [individuals] with the knowledge and education to take care of themselves will boost their confidence to overcome the many obstacles they may face in the future,” she said.

While Njoroge, Riesterer and Stiel are all very much focused on volunteerism, it is not the only commonality among them. Their faith experience is also paramount. “I hope to make God number one in my life by sincerely giving Him praise and thanks throughout the day, looking for His guidance when I need help, and finding peace and comfort in Him and not through things of this world throughout every day of my time here,” said Riesterer. Stiel also hopes to “continually deepen and strengthen my personal relationship with God.” Njoroge added, “I also love the idea of having [a] spiritual director on my side.” Since service and faith development are two of the major goals of the NVC, their year here in Green Bay promises to benefit not only themselves, but also those whose lives they will touch in the community.
To learn more about the Norbertine Volunteer Community, please visit www.norbertines.org.

Photo Credit: St. Norbert Abbey

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