Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives

In the fall of 2023, NFCYM was awarded a grant to expand its commitment to Diversity and Inclusion. This grant will fund three initiatives: the Diversity and Inclusion Training, the Encountering Christ video series, and the Imago Dei Leadership Initiative. All three initiatives have run successful pilots over the past few years.


Diversity and Inclusion Training

The Diversity and Inclusion Training (D+I Training) was developed for NFCYM Members. Recognizing that diversity alone does not breed cultural competency, this program will create baseline knowledge for ministry leaders through common language and help them understand the cultural groups they will encounter, engage, and lead.

This pilot will consist of four sessions combining technical knowledge, conversation, exposure, practical implementation, and modeling. Participants will have opportunities between sessions to understand further and give and gain feedback from other participants about how their session learnings are being implemented in their communities. Participants will leave with a renewed sense of understanding of their own identities, the identities of those they minister to, and the barriers to evangelization faced in ministering in diverse church contexts.

Encountering Christ Video Series

Encountering Christ is a video series created as a diversity and inclusion effort of NFCYM to serve as a member resource to encounter the diversity of the U.S. Catholic Church. Through this series, you can hear from our brothers and sisters how Catholicism is lived and experienced in relation to their culture. Our video series is divided into four segments: historical context, current realities, pastoral practices, and a panel discussion with reflection questions.

The initial pilot focused on the African American / Black Catholic experience. Our next installment in the series will examine the importance of cultural competency and inculturation in ministry. The following installment will focus on another cultural family: either the Hispanic/Latino, Asian American / Pacific Islander, or Native American communities.  

Imago Dei Leadership Initiative

This NFCYM initiative invites a select group of young adults serving in ministry who represent the diversity of the U.S. Catholic Church to engage in a shared conversation on leadership and intercultural competency in ministry.  The cohort meets for ten sessions over a year.  

The goal of the initiative includes:  

  • Guiding participants to develop their own ministry identity as an interculturally competent leader 
  • Reflecting deeply on their own calling to ministry and leadership in the Catholic Church 
  • Engaging in calling to ministry and leadership in the Catholic Church 
  • Engaging in significant calling to ministry and leadership in the Catholic Church 
  • Engaging in major topics and pastoral concerns of the church and ministry 
  • Listening deeply for ways to highlight their gifts 
  • Exposing participants to theological, practical and spiritual resources from many cultural groups within the church 
  • Connecting participants to ministry leaders and mentors who will create a network of support 

After completing the program, each participant will consider themself a leader in the church with ample gifts to be shared. The participant will have familiarity and practice with concepts, skills, and attitudes that are key to leadership and intercultural ministry. The participants will have access to many resources on various ministry best practices. The participants will also be equipped for ministry in a multicultural setting and ready for more learning and experience. 

If you are interested in being a part of any of these project teams, please contact Darius Villalobos at [email protected]  

Multicultural Resources

Visit the pages below for more resources and information on NFCYM’s diversity and inclusion efforts.

Yazmín Maní Malone

Pastoral Juvenil Hispana Coordinator,
Diocese of Austin

Diocesan Member

"NFCYM has accompanied me in reaching out to like minded professionals to better provide service (ministry) to adolescents. NFCYM has allowed me to network and grow professionally.

'Youth as Protagonists' has been essential to Pastoral Juvenil Hispana in the Diocese of Austin."

Eva P. Delgado

Youth Minister, St. Christopher Church

Associate Member

"The various resources have helped me keep our program exciting and vibrant. NFCYM has provided me with shared information via webinars, workshops, conferences, outreach, and opportunities that are very informative to help make my ministry successful.

NFCYM is an open forum for me to seek material, guidance and support in keeping the youth ministry program successful."