Leaders of four volunteer organizations in secondary schools of the USA Central and Southern Province gathered at Jesuit Hall in St. Louis January 24 – 26 to network and brainstorm. Participants represented Alum Service Corps, Cristo Rey Jesuit
Volunteer Service Corps, Jesuit College Preparatory of Dallas Alumni Service Corp and Strake Jesuit College Preparatory Alumni Service Corps.
The four organizations share common goals and similar procedures; each is a volunteer teaching opportunity for recent college graduates with Jesuit school ties. During the three-day gathering, participants shared best practices for promotion, recruiting, hiring and formation. Perhaps more significantly, they explored how they can collaborate and support the other programs with an eye on being of the most service to province schools, students and alumni.
The group visited the St. Louis Alum Service Corps home and heard from a panel of volunteers from De Smet Jesuit High School, Loyola Academy of St. Louis and St. Louis University High School. Each volunteer addressed:
A brief introduction, including why they choose to serve
Their experience of living simply in community – consolations & desolations
Their spiritual growth during their volunteer experience – consolations & desolations
Their teaching/mentoring responsibilities – consolations & desolations
By the end of their three days, the group decided to create a collaborative. Over the next three years, they plan to be intentional and invitational in working together on some initiatives, including:
a winter retreat experience,
more frequent meetings and contact,
a common data bank,
a google group and resource,
a summer experience of orientation,
the development of a supplemental online resource for volunteers,
a discussion about applicants,
the development of a North American cohort gathering,
on-going conversations about application process, volunteer stipends and budgeting best practices.
February 25, 2019 — Pope Francis concluded the four-day "Meeting on the Protection of Minors in the Church" with 190 Catholic bishops on Sunday, vowing that the church will "decisively confront" the abuse of minors.