Boiler Awakening

Share this Ministry

Boiler Awakening is a retreat experience like none other, bringing you closer to Christ, your faith goals and the St. Thomas Aquinas community. Boiler Awakening is a 3 day event starting on Friday evening and continuing until Sunday morning. The retreat is hosted at Lafayette Central Catholic, just across the river from Purdue, and is an overnight prayerful and peace filled retreat experience (over Friday and Saturday night). Boiler Awakening is a great opportunity for new students to grad students alike and is truly a heart warming weekend that brings such a strong but loving reminder of God’s presence in our life. Please reach out to if you have any questions, retreat applications will open on January 29th.

Boiler Awakening is a student-led, Catholic awakening retreat welcoming of college students seeking to strengthen their relationship with Christ. We strive to contribute our gifts and talents and to empower student leaders in order to assist participants in perpetually owning their faith and enflaming a life-long passion for involvement in the faith community.

Boiler Awakening is designed for all college-age students (undergraduate and graduate) from Purdue University and the surrounding area. The retreat begins Friday afternoon, at St. Tom’s and concludes Sunday afternoon. Boiler Awakening is held at Central Catholic High School in Lafayette. The weekend includes a variety of talks, activities and reflection designed to allow each retreater to be “awakened” to the Holy Spirit within him or her. The retreat concludes Sunday with the “source and summit” of our Catholic faith, the celebration of the Mass.

This retreat is held twice a year – once each in the Fall and Spring. There will be an “Application” week each semester. A link for online applications will be made available on this page. There is a small cost of $45 to participate in Boiler Awakening. This fee covers lodging, great meals, and an entire weekend of fun. If you need financial assistance, don’t hesitate to e-mail No student should miss out on Awakening due to financial strain.

For More Information

Other Awakening Retreates

Boiler Awakening Info


Meet our Boiler Awakening Coordinator and Rector!


Charlie Stiens

Coordinator |

How I got involved at St. Tom’s: I got involved at St. Thomas Aquinas as a freshman as I started attending Sunday night dinners and went on my first Boiler Awakening in my second semester at Purdue. After attending BA I started going to regular IGNITE small groups as a sophomore and came to know the St. Tom’s community as a wonderful community where I could share in my faith alongside other young people ready to serve and show compassion right in Purdue’s backyard.

Favorite Bible Verse: “Therefor, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain” – 1 Corinthians 15:58

Fun Fact: I am both color blind and ambidextrous (use both my left and right hand on a daily basis)

Bio: I grew up in the countryside right outside of Richmond, Indiana. My dad was a Purdue alum so I grew up a big time Purdue fan and always knew I wanted to go there. I was an avid soccer player through my childhood and represented my high school as the team captain my senior year. I am currently studying Construction Engineering at Purdue and after graduation will be leaving for Seattle, Washington to work for Lease Crutcher Lewis as a Project Engineer. Throughout my life I have always been hungry for knowledge on school subjects, history and my faith. In my free time I’m an avid outdoorsman spending a lot of time biking, running, hiking and backpacking with my friends, family and girlfriend. I am so excited to serve as the BA 16 Coordinator and will work my hardest to serve Christ in bringing the best Boiler Awakening experience possible to the retreatants and staff.


Nelson Jenig


Major: Industrial Engineering

How I got involved at St. Tom’s: My first real involvement in St. Tom’s was when I decided to attend Boiler Awakening 10 my second semester at Purdue. Boiler Awakening opened by eyes to the freedom and love faith can bring you. It gave me a new community that I can always fall back on. After BA, I became the communications intern at St. Tom’s and do most of the advertisement for events. Since then I haven’t stopped trying to get involved and learn new thing about my faith!!!

Favorite Bible Verse: “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” -Proverbs 27:17

Fun Fact: I played on Purdue’s Women’s ultimate team for my freshman year at Purdue. I went to Haiti for a mission trip with St. Tom’s. I just got to go to Hawaii for Christmas Break with my extended family.

Bio: I was raised in Romeoville, IL, which is right next to Joliet (get it, Romeo and Juliet; soo clever). I have a twin sister, a little sister who is a freshman at Denver University, and a little brother who is a sophomore at Marmion Academy. I will be graduating in the Spring with a degree in Industrial Engineering and a minor in Psychology. I will hopefully be attending graduate school in the fall for Counseling Psychology. I love to play ultimate frisbee and read. I am so excited to be the Rector of BA16 and continue to grow the BA community!!!!!!!