For Victoria Ramon, an encounter with Christ changed everything
FORT WORTH — While growing up, attending Mass was just part of the routine for Victoria Ramon in her close-knit family, but everything started to change in the fall of 2014.
“I had an encounter with Christ,” Ramon said. “My soul was thirsting for Him and I began to grow and learn and become active in my faith.”
Her focus on her faith in Christ led her to meaningful times of worship in Mass and attending conferences and retreats.
At a retreat with the Salesian Sisters of Saint John Bosco in San Antonio in spring of 2015, she sensed what God wanted her to do.
“Surrounded by youth... I felt in my heart this is what the Lord was calling me to do,” Ramon said.
When she returned to St. Ann Parish in Burleson, she talked to the church’s director of youth ministry. Soon she became an assistant director and eventually director at St. Ann.
She loved the curiosity and the enthusiasm of teenagers. Ramon connected both with those actively engaged in their faith and with those who needed encouragement.
Now she’s continuing her work with youth and with those who minister to youth as the new associate director of youth and young adult ministries for the Diocese of Fort Worth.
Jason Spoolstra, director of youth, young adult, and campus ministries for the diocese, said that Ramon stood out as an excellent person for the job because of “her faithfulness and her commitment to Christ.”
Ramon had worked well in youth ministry at the parish level and in helping with projects in the diocese, and she was clearly a woman of strong faith.
“We could tell right away that she lived a life of prayer,” Spoolstra said.
She will work on programs for youth and with youth ministers throughout the diocese. She’s also bilingual and can promote youth ministry in Spanish-speaking communities, Spoolstra said.
Ramon said she’s excited about helping with events and retreats, doing whatever is needed in youth ministry, and traveling.
Ramon grew up in a musical family and played the clarinet in the marching band at Paschal High School. One of her dreams was traveling the world to go to music festivals. Now, she’s looking forward to experiencing new places through the lens of faith.
“I want to go to visit holy places that are part of our faith,” she said. “I want to see our faith at work in the world.”
While traveling can be rewarding, Ramon is most passionate about helping young people learn to engage in their faith.
Soon after starting in youth ministry, she began encouraging teens to grow in Christ.
“I began to share about my encounter and how growing up we went to Mass, but how I wasn’t active in my faith, and I didn’t cooperate with the grace of the sacraments,” Ramon said.
She wanted others to know that God’s grace is always available.
“After a period of being passive in your faith for so long, even then the Lord is still pursuing you and wants a relationship with you,” she said.
Even when her faith was what she called “passive,” Ramon said she realizes now that God was with her all along, during her first Communion at St. Matthew Parish in Arlington and her Confirmation at St. Mary of the Assumption in Fort Worth and in her time at St. Ann.
Ramon, 31, graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington with a degree in business administration. She and her husband Tomas Maldonado live in north Fort Worth with their Shih Tzu Teddy and attend St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish in Keller.