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Ignite groups are small faith communities which meet weekly on and off campus. After reading the upcoming Sunday’s Gospel, we discuss, reflect on and apply the Word of God to our daily lives. Ignite provides a medium for people of all levels of faith to find support, challenge themselves, and bring one another closer to Christ.

Get in Touch

Weekly Meetings

Bilingual (Spanish and English) – Meet in Room 4 at St. Tom’s
Sunday @ 3:30pm, Andrea Waclawek

Honors/Third Street – Meet on the couches by the Third Street Suites laundry room
Monday @ 7:00pm, Claire Anderson and Katherine Meinzen

St. Tom’s/Hawkins – Meet in St. Tom’s basement room 4
Tuesday @ 6:00pm, Anthony Wade and Megan Geraghty

Windsor – Meet in the Wood Living room
Tuesday @ 7:00pm, Ashleigh Martin and Tori Sullivan

Wiley/Tarkington – Meet in Wiley lobby
Tuesday @ 7:30pm, Laura Peterson and Kevin Green

Greek – Meet in Krach 148
Tuesday @ 7:30pm, Cassie Brown and Thomas Rogers

Off-Campus – Meet at 246 Marsteller St. Apt. 1
Wednesday @ 7:15pm, Sean Nolan

Wednesday @ 7:30pm, Marie Holkenbrink and Dwezil D’Souza

Earhart/Shreve – Meet in the large conference room of Earhart, behind the main office and next to the vending machines
Wednesday @ 7:30pm, JP Cole and Elisabeth DeMarco

St. Tom’s – Meet in Conference Room
Wednesday @ 8:00pm, Brigid Hayes and Nick Riedel

Call 20/30 – Meet in St. Tom’s room 24
Thursday @ 6:00pm, Mary Friedl and Brandon Coventry

Hillenbrand – Meet in front lobby/piano room
Thursday @ 8:00pm, Madison Trout and Adam Goodman


May I join an Ignite group partway through the semester?
Of course! Anyone is welcome at any time, and newcomers are always appreciated. Discussion is based on the upcoming Sunday’s Gospel, so each week is a new experience.

Do I have to be Catholic to attend Ignite?
Of course not! The beauty of the Gospels is that they speak to everyone across time. We’d love to hear your interpretation of God’s Word.

If I cannot make it to the Ignite in my dorm, may I attend another group?
Of course! Ignites meet at varying times and locations in order for everyone to attend the group which best fits his or her schedule and circumstances.

What is the structure of a typical Ignite?
Every meeting starts with prayer and the reading of the upcoming Sunday’s Gospel. The leader(s) will facilitate the discussion with questions based on the reading. At the end of the hour, the meeting closes with prayer and fellowship.


Meet our Ignite Coordinators!


Sean Nolan

Ignite Coordinator | nolans@purdue.edu

Major: Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering, First Year Master’s Student

How I got involved at St. Tom’s: When I first came to Purdue, I was really seeking to strengthen my faith because of the slow realization I had in high school of the importance God in every aspect of my life. Despite that desire, though, I was intimidated by getting involved at St. Tom’s because being active in a church’s community was so foreign to me growing up. It was only by the grace of God that I had the courage to attend weekly small groups (now named Ignite) and the new student retreat (now named the New Student Overnighter), and I would recommend both as strongly as possible to any student because of the impacts they have had on my life. I have been truly blessed to have St. Tom’s in my life.

Favorite Bible Verse: Psalms 23:4; “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff comfort me.”

Fun Fact: In high school, I performed Macedonian folk dancing at the winter festival at Navy Pier in Chicago (photos available on Facebook).

Bio: I was born and raised in Munster, a midsized town in Northwest Indiana, which I am very happy to call home. My family consists of my two loving parents and my brother who is one year older than I. God has been good to me every day of my life, and I have had a wonderful childhood, adolescence, and present. In high school, I felt the calling “to make things go fast,” so I came to Purdue to study Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering. I graduated this year (Spring 2015), but seeing no need to enter the “real world” yet, I am back for a second round. When I can find the time, I love playing guitar, but as one may expect, the past few years have not been kind to hobbies. I also love talking about God and His Church, so if you’d like to do that let me know because I’ll always make time for that!


Lindsey May

Ignite Coordinator | may67@purdue.edu

Major: Mechanical Engineering, Sophomore

How I got involved at St. Tom’s: When I got to Purdue, I was excited to start my faith journey on my own. I wasn’t sure how to get started, but when I heard about Ignite at Mass, I decided to go to the group in my dorm. After that, I could not get enough of the ministries at St. Tom’s. I went on the New Student Overnighter and Boiler Awakening, and joined the Grand Prix team. From there, I have staffed every Boiler Awakening retreat since the one I went on, began leading an Ignite group, and love my St. Tom’s family more than anything!

Favorite Bible Verse: 1 Corinthians 16:14 – “Let all that you do be done in love.”

Fun Fact: When I eat anything really minty, I sneeze.

Bio: I am from Austin, Texas. My whole family is Catholic, so my faith has always been important to me, but it never really flourished until I came to college. I started branching out more and being less afraid of sharing my faith with others. I have always been very bad at small talk, but God has used my love for deep conversations to grow so much closer to Him and allow me to expand my faith from where it was at the beginning of college until now. My favorite part of Catholicism is adoration, and I love spending quiet time with Jesus. I also try to live each day for other people, so let me help you with anything you need!


Davis Jeffries

Ignite Coordinator | jeffried@purdue.edu

Major: Biological Engineering

How I got involved at St. Tom’s: I got involved in the St. Thomas Aquinas community through a Spring Break mission trip to Jonestown, Mississippi my freshman year. This led to a domino effect, where one thing kept leading to another, such as Sunday night dinner & mass, Boiler Awakening, and leading my own Ignite small group.

Favorite Bible Verse: Romans 5: 3-5 – We also rejoice in our sufferings because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

Fun Fact: I was born with one front tooth, which had to be pulled when I was three days old.

Bio: I come from a strong Catholic family. Church has always been a part of my life, but admittedly I never truly took my faith into my own hands until I came to college. My relationship with God and my faith started taking leaps and bounds. When I started college, I was under the impression I would only attend mass on Sunday, but God had other plans for me. This year, He has given me the opportunity to be an Ignite coordinator, as well as be involved with many other ministries at St. Tom’s!


Lauren Huemmer

Ignite Coordinator | lhuemmer@purdue.edu

Major: Pharmacy, First year Professional Student

How I got involved at St. Tom’s: I came to Purdue following my older siblings and knew that I wanted to be a part of the community. I had a wonderful youth group at my home parish and I knew that coming to college I would need a faith community to carry me through the road ahead. Although my first semester was rough, and I didn’t have many friends, I joined an Ignite group second semester and made some friendships that I still have today. I also went on Boiler Awakening 10 and was immersed into a culture of faith, love, and fellowship.

Favorite Bible Verse: Matthew 14:31 -Immediately Jesus stretched out his hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”

Fun Fact: I’m not just a Pharmacy nerd, I am also a Star Wars, Marvel, and BBC’s Sherlock nerd.

Bio: I LOVE being Catholic. I am a cradle Catholic and my faith journey started when I was very young. As a homeschooler, I was always engaged in faith education from an early age. For those of you who know what the Baltimore Catechism is, at one point of time I basically had that book memorized backwards and forwards. Studying the nuts and bolts of the faith built a strong foundation of Catholicism in my head which has often been my strength when tough times and personal tragedies have struck. In college, I have come to explore the more personal side of Faith, and I am always seeking ways to improve my prayer life and build relationships with others. I am very passionate about Pharmacy, music, running, serving others, having life chats, Mama Mary, and of course, the Healer of all souls, Jesus Christ. If you ever need a sympathetic ear to hash out anything, I would love to get to know you better.


Claire Holkenbrink

Ignite Coordinator | cholkenb@purdue.edu

Major: Civil Engineering

How I got involved at St. Tom’s: I began attending the Ignite group which met in my dorm freshman year because I was looking for a group of strong friends who shared my faith, some people to walk to church with, and an opportunity to overcome my fear of small groups. I found those things in such plentiful quantities that now I’ve been leading/subbing Ignites for three years and coordinating for two!

Favorite Bible Verse: Tobit 11: 10 – “Tobit got up and stumbled out through the courtyard gate to meet his son.”

This verse reminds and inspires me to constantly run toward God with the love and trust of blind Tobit running to greet his son at the gate.

Fun Fact: I didn’t have my own bedroom until I was 20 years old

Bio: I was raised to be a strong Catholic in the midst of a community that was very against Catholicism and all they thought it taught. Until I came to Purdue my faith was mostly something I clung to stubbornly to spite my anti-Catholics classmates, but when I got here I took ownership of my faith and began to fall in love with and get increasingly more involved in the St. Tom’s community. This year I am an Ignite coordinator, a member of the Parish Pastoral Council, a staff member for Boiler Awakening, and generally available to lend a hand whenever and wherever I am needed.