Michael Luna

How am I growing in my own awareness of my strengths and weaknesses?


i was able to realize that i am easily influenced by those around me. this is one of my weaknesses because it brought up much doubt in my own religion. those around me made me question something that i was brought up through, through the entirety of my life.


i realized that i have a bad memory! this actually helped me realize that i needed to review more. i was involved in a skit at this event, which was a retreat for the year two confirmation students. this was a two day retreat and i learned that i remember more when i look at something and keep reading it to myself.


for wrestling, i realized that i was weak in communicating with my coaches, mainly because i feared how they would think of me, even though they were one of the most influential people of my life. i was strong when it came to committing my time and body to the team. all the wear and tear that the practices put on me made it hard for me to try and accomplish many things as homework.


well prior to going into any of these famines, i was unaware that there were so many families all over the world that struggle to support themselves. this event also made me aware that even with a small group, we were able to gather several thousand dollars to send to catholic relief services, which will send the money to Africa, where it will be used to pay for their food.

What challenges have I been through?

My Faith

well i am a catholic. i had been faced with many questions by people around me of why God would allow such horrible things to happen to people. going into the event i was very doubtful and uncertain of my beliefs, and wanted to have them solidified after going.

Being In Front of a Crowd

i went through one huge obstacle which is the dislike of using my outside voice in front of a crowd that is inside. i also had conflict with making it to all of the skit practices because of the limited time that everyone had, to where we had conflict in our schedules.

Sprained Elbow

there were several times when i had major projects to do that i had to meet with the members of my group, but at the same time i was dedicated to the sport, and all the tournaments. i had to meet late with the members of my group, but we were able to get all of it done and get a good grade. also in committing myself to the team so much that i did not even pay attention to my injury because when i was with my team it all seemed to go away. what had happened was that i sprained my elbow and i did not feel a need to pay a visit to the doctors office because when i was out on the mat, it all seemed to go away, and the wrestling room was the only other place i spent my time, so i rarely felt the pain.


this event was when i helped the track team set the hurdles, because a small amount of the the team would do it and it would take too long angering the opposing teams coaches. there have also been some times that some of the members who were supposed to help did not show, so the experienced members had to go in and take control of many stations of the hurdles.


This task was a semi-challenging task because me and the youth of my church had to go into famine for 30 hours. Although it was a struggle to get to the final hours, for each one i was able to gain a new perspective on how those who struggle with hunger have to live on a day to day basis of not knowing if they will have enough food for the day.
It is sad knowing that there are people in this world that live theirs lives in a constant mindset that they will not be able to eat. With the time that i spent during the 30 hour famine I was able to package food that would be shipped off to people in Africa, as well as a few other countries, that are unable to support their families let alone themselves. At first I was not quite sure how the famine would affect me but as i continued on through it i came to feeling more and more pain and this brought me to the understanding that they have no option of going back to having food like i did. they have to live with it unfortunately.

In what ways have I started new challenges?


i started to challenge myself when it came time for league. my coaches needed a wrestler to bump up two weight classes and i offered every single time we had a match. at CIF we went against one of the toughest teams of the state and i pinned my guy and as a team we only lost by one point. that choice of going up two or even three weight classes was the most challenging part


Well during the famine it was brought to my mind that there are ways to help those, no only in the world, but also those in the community. I not only did this event but after it influenced me to help out at another local church and serve food for the homeless. i wanted to do this several times, but was constricted with time because of sports. other than feeding the people i have been trying to donate food and clothes to the salvation army and at canned food drives.

In what ways have I developed new skills?


i was able to gather the knowledge from our heavy weight coach on what to do on certain moves that the person would do to me in a match. after several weeks of practice i was able to come back and defeat many of my opponents. it helped me get to the CIF tournament.


For these events, i actually developed the skill of public speaking. i have always been afraid of talking in front of large crowds, and the famine really helped me to open up and be able to be myself in front of larger crowds. this service did this for me in the way that i needed to talk to my groups. i did not only attend the famine because i wanted to help end the world hunger, but i also did it because i had prior obligations to lead the youth that were attending the event.

In what ways have I shown perseverance and commitment to my activities?

Staying Focused

throughout the entire two days, i was able to stay focused on what was needed to be done. there were many people that seemed to only go because their friends had gone.

Being in Front of a Crowd

i showed perseverance because i really did not want to go in front of the group that i had to go in front of, and when it came time for it, i just sucked it up and decided that i had to do it for the kids because they needed to experience the skit and have it impact their lives.


every Saturday for about three months we have wrestling tournaments. i made it to every single one and was able to pull some major victories, but i also sometimes lost, but it helped me to get better. also dedicating myself to hours of practice right after school, then being able to go home and work on homework and maintain good grades. i pushed through all of the struggle and was able to do well in both wrestling and school.


there have been several times where i was not supposed to go and help because of previous engagements with my youth leader, but i decided that the track meet would not go on that late and that my youth leader always stayed late so i would be able to reschedule our planning dates.


In this event there were several peers from different school that brought food into the 30 hour famine. this was on the things of not to do or not to bring to the event. i learned about what had happened by some of my group members, and since i was a leader, i went in and confiscated their food. i as actually surprised that some of the people that were eating the food were some of the leaders. i was committed to go through the entire 30 hours without eating, and believe that the actions of my fellow peers was completely dumb. i could have sat down with them and ate, but i would not be satisfied by cheating on something that we were doing for all those that have to go hungry every day. it is not that hard to only do what they do for their lives for 30 hours.

In what ways have I worked collaboratively?

Leadership at Retreat

well, at this retreat, i was part of the leadership and a skit. the leadership members met twice every week and discussed what to do and how to make the retreat the best experience for those who were there for the retreat. for the skit, we met on our own time, independently from the leadership to be able to present to the attendees.


wrestling is considered an individual sport, but also a team sport. at practice we are always practicing with one another, making each other better for what is to come. for example when it came time to verse our rival, south hills, we were able to pull a big upset and defeat them, only because that week at practice we worked our butts off to get to our goal of claiming another league championship.


well, when moving the hurdles, there are some people that are slightly slower than the others and when one sees that we automatically go and help them because it will be easier for them and there is no need for another person to struggle, since the members are like a “crew”, where you’re only as strong as you’re weakest link.


throughout both of the events, all of the attendees worked together to collect money outside of my church. we made signs with the statistics of what was happening, and showed where their donated money was going to go. we also made food bags that were sent to africa, through an assembly line. one group placed the dry food into the package. they then sent it to the next group where they measured the weight of the bag to make sure that it is able to be shipped without any other costs. the next group therefore packaged the bags into a box.

In what ways have I been engaged in issues with global importance?


well during the famine it was brought up to the groups that “if you have money in the bank, your wallet, and some spare change you are among the top 8% of the world’s wealthy.” this shows that the third world countries and several of the people in our country and community suffer from poverty. i also learned that there aare many people that suffer from hunger, and that they eat maybe once a week, and it is not large, but small portions because the parents give most of there food to their children.

What are the ethical or moral implications of what I’m doing and learning?

My Faith

i did this event in part because i am a catholic. but that is not the only reason. i wanted to learn more about what i am. as i mentioned a lot already, i am catholic and i wanted to solidify my beliefs because i was doubtful and uncertain


through this experience i was able to gather a better grasp of what people who live in horrible economic conditions actually live through. there were several speakers that came to talk to us about their organization and were able to convey how horrible there conditions were. when i look back at the event i am very grateful that i was able to be a part of it because the opportunity really taught me how i can help those in the world and my community

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