“One of my best friends is a 90-year-old lady.”

Imagine a teenager saying that? For Michael Ray, that’s exactly the case. He strolls down the street to often eat meals and chat with his 90-year-old neighbor Joy. The relationship has helped Michael grow greatly in his faith.

Ray, a senior at Warsaw High School and parishioner at Sacred Heart in Warsaw, is our Michiana High School Student of the Month for April. Redeemer Radio’s Student of the month, presented by St. Joseph Health System, recognizes students who excel in the classroom, show a strong Catholic faith, and are involved in extracurricular activities at school or in the community.

One value Michael takes very seriously is that of helping out others. That’s how he met Joy.

“She’s just amazing,” Michael said of his 90-year-old neighbor. “I started by just helping her out but it led to walking with her, having big stories with her and just sitting down on her porch. Eating even meals with her and it was great because she is someone amazing to talk to. She teaches me her life stories and she’s super religious too. She always prays for me and calls me and I walk down there and it’s really nice.”

Michael says their friendship increased during the pandemic.

“Since she lives along, it doesn’t give her the experience and opportunity to be with someone and share,” Michael explains. “She can talk on the phone but interacting with someone (in person) really cheers her up and makes her smile and that makes me really happy.”

Michael has a 4.04 GPA at Warsaw High School, has been an alter server at Sacred Heart and is a top notch athlete. He’s won three sectional championships in tennis as well as 8 sectional championships in swimming, including 7 relays and one individual title in his career.

“Swimming is a big aspect in my life,” Michael, who will swim next year at DePauw, explains. “It takes a lot of time so I’ve learned how to manage it and everything but it gets hard during the school year being busy but what really helps me is praying between my meals and during the day. It relieves all the stress that swimming puts on me.”

Michael says his faith plays a big role in calming him before his big swim meets.

“It gives me an opportunity to take a deep breath and know someone is there watching me.”

Michael says he will sometimes say a rosary before swimming, calling it one of his favorite things to do before getting into the pool. He will also pray the Our Father and also has a book that has a few different prays about praying before a game, or praying with anxiety. He also prays at tennis too. His doubles teammate is also Catholic and they will often pray before a match and that helps them get motivated.

Michael was born and raised Catholic, going to Church every Sunday and attending Sunday school. He says a Steubenville trip before 9th grade really helped intensify his faith.

“That’s one of the biggest things to happen in my life,” Michael says of the trip. “It was a big calling to my faith. It made me pray a lot more than I was before and made me realize what Mass and everything was really about. I pray so much more than I had been and I’m way more involved at Church and started serving at the Altar with Fr. Jonathan. That’s one of my favorite things to do and I’m really sad that quarantine cancelled that.”

Fr. Jonathan Norton, Pastor at Sacred Heart Parish in Warsaw, nominated Michael for the Student of the Month.

“Michael is always willing to help out the parish and a couple of times has even presented the pastor with ideas of how he could help,” Fr. Norton wrote in his nomination. “Michael excels in sports and other extracurricular activities at school. He is well respected by his peers and other members at Church. He also has a deep faith and is comfortable sharing it with others.”

Michael is involved with the young group at Sacred Heart and does a lot of community service work through the Octagon Club at Warsaw High School. He’s a member of the National Honor Society, Mathletes and Students for Life.

He says his experience at Warsaw High School has been awesome.

“When I first got there, I thought it was huge,” Michael explains about the 2nd largest high school in Michiana. “I got used to it and realized I was blessed to be there. All the teachers have been amazing, helping me out. I couldn’t be more blessed. God has given me a great gift.”

Michael hopes to be a financial advisor when he graduates from DePauw. As for those he wants to give a shoutout to for helping him get to this point, Michael says his parents, grandparents, Fr. Jonathan (who he calls the best Pastor he’s ever had) and Joy!

Be sure to check out our interview with Michael from the Daily Refill that’s linked above. The Student of the Month interview airs between 7:30-8am on the 1st Wednesday of each month on Redeemer Radio. To nominate a Student of the Month, go to redeemerradio.com/student and fill out the form.

Congratulations Michael!”One of my best friends is a 90-year-old lady.”

Imagine a teenager saying that? For Michael Ray, that’s exactly the case. He strolls down the street to often eat meals and chat with his 90-year-old neighbor Joy. The relationship has helped Michael grow greatly in his faith.

Ray, a senior at Warsaw High School and parishioner at Sacred Heart in Warsaw, is our Michiana High School Student of the Month for April. Redeemer Radio’s Student of the month, presented by St. Joseph Health System, recognizes students who excel in the classroom, show a strong Catholic faith, and are involved in extracurricular activities at school or in the community.

One value Michael takes very seriously is that of helping out others. That’s how he met Joy.

“She’s just amazing,” Michael said of his 90-year-old neighbor. “I started by just helping her out but it led to walking with her, having big stories with her and just sitting down on her porch. Eating even meals with her and it was great because she is someone amazing to talk to. She teaches me her life stories and she’s super religious too. She always prays for me and calls me and I walk down there and it’s really nice.”

Michael says their friendship increased during the pandemic.

“Since she lives along, it doesn’t give her the experience and opportunity to be with someone and share,” Michael explains. “She can talk on the phone but interacting with someone (in person) really cheers her up and makes her smile and that makes me really happy.”

Michael has a 4.04 GPA at Warsaw High School, has been an alter server at Sacred Heart and is a top notch athlete. He’s won three sectional championships in tennis as well as 8 sectional championships in swimming, including 7 relays and one individual title in his career.

“Swimming is a big aspect in my life,” Michael, who will swim next year at DePauw, explains. “It takes a lot of time so I’ve learned how to manage it and everything but it gets hard during the school year being busy but what really helps me is praying between my meals and during the day. It relieves all the stress that swimming puts on me.”

Michael says his faith plays a big role in calming him before his big swim meets.

“It gives me an opportunity to take a deep breath and know someone is there watching me.”

Michael says he will sometimes say a rosary before swimming, calling it one of his favorite things to do before getting into the pool. He will also pray the Our Father and also has a book that has a few different prays about praying before a game, or praying with anxiety. He also prays at tennis too. His doubles teammate is also Catholic and they will often pray before a match and that helps them get motivated.

Michael was born and raised Catholic, going to Church every Sunday and attending Sunday school. He says a Steubenville trip before 9th grade really helped intensify his faith.

“That’s one of the biggest things to happen in my life,” Michael says of the trip. “It was a big calling to my faith. It made me pray a lot more than I was before and made me realize what Mass and everything was really about. I pray so much more than I had been and I’m way more involved at Church and started serving at the Altar with Fr. Jonathan. That’s one of my favorite things to do and I’m really sad that quarantine cancelled that.”

Fr. Jonathan Norton, Pastor at Sacred Heart Parish in Warsaw, nominated Michael for the Student of the Month.

“Michael is always willing to help out the parish and a couple of times has even presented the pastor with ideas of how he could help,” Fr. Norton wrote in his nomination. “Michael excels in sports and other extracurricular activities at school. He is well respected by his peers and other members at Church. He also has a deep faith and is comfortable sharing it with others.”

Michael is involved with the young group at Sacred Heart and does a lot of community service work through the Octagon Club at Warsaw High School. He’s a member of the National Honor Society, Mathletes and Students for Life.

He says his experience at Warsaw High School has been awesome.

“When I first got there, I thought it was huge,” Michael explains about the 2nd largest high school in Michiana. “I got used to it and realized I was blessed to be there. All the teachers have been amazing, helping me out. I couldn’t be more blessed. God has given me a great gift.”

Michael hopes to be a financial advisor when he graduates from DePauw. As for those he wants to give a shoutout to for helping him get to this point, Michael says his parents, grandparents, Fr. Jonathan (who he calls the best Pastor he’s ever had) and Joy!

Be sure to check out our interview with Michael from the Daily Refill that’s linked above. The Student of the Month interview airs between 7:30-8am on the 1st Wednesday of each month on Redeemer Radio. To nominate a Student of the Month, go to redeemerradio.com/student and fill out the form.

Congratulations Michael!