Category: Former Volunteer Reflections

Lessons from My Students: Community & Simple Living

By Maddie Bologa, Cristo Rey Jesuit Volunteers While working at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School together, my fellow volunteers and I would return after a day’s work to our cozy, third-story apartment located on one of the major streets in Chicago. In this apartment, we shared meals and favorite pastimes, reflected on our volunteer journeys at… Read more »

Invitation to Transformation

By Emily Bruce, Maggie’s Place Dear Future Volunteer, are you ready to be transformed? Service is always an invitation to transformation. Right now, you cannot possibly imagine the ways your heart will expand in these upcoming months. The word “service” might bring to mind community, laughter, intentionality, and prayer- but a year of service brings… Read more »

Urban Farming in Dayton – how service opens unexpected doors

By Ellen Yoder, Marianist PULSE Program It has been nearly two years since responding to the call to serve with the Marianist PULSE Program in Dayton, Ohio. Before the call to serve, I was discerning a career in professional sports. The same day I accepted a job with a minor league baseball team was also… Read more »

Service in the City of Angels

By Hannah Petcovic, Vincentian Service Corps West, 2013-2014 I started my service commitment with the Catholic Volunteer Network five years ago and still think about Skid Row almost every day. I think about driving through downtown Los Angeles to park near a posh apartment complex. I think about my morning walk through the toy district;… Read more »

Share Your Wisdom

By Jessica Vozella – St. Joseph Worker Program – Los Angeles, CA Jessica is one of five CVN Serving with Sisters Ambassadors – volunteers sharing the joy, energy, and fulfillment of serving alongside Catholic Sisters in CVN member programs, through creative reflection, conversation, and experience. This is her last post as her volunteer year comes to a close… Read more »

The Weight of Waiting

By Allison Dethlefs, Franciscan Mission Service The darkness pressed in on me as I fumbled to shut off my alarm. I used to be a morning person, I thought groggily, checking my watch to make sure it was still before 5:00 a.m. But over a year of living in Cochabamba, Bolivia had softened me, and… Read more »

From Brokenness to Healing

By Molly Trainor, former Benedictine Volunteer Fourth Sunday of Lent John 9:1, 6-9, 34-38 “I am the light of the world, says the Lord whoever follows me will have the light of life.” Today John tells of Jesus healing a man born blind. When others learn that the man can see, they ask themselves, “Isn’t… Read more »

Grace Meets Us Where We Are

By Melissa Carnall, alumnus of Amate House Third Sunday of Lent John 4:5-15, 19B-26, 39A, 40-42 “One does not live on bread along,  but on every word that comes forth from the mouth of God.” Writer Anne Lamott tells us, “Grace meets us where we are, but does not leave us where it found us.”… Read more »

Savoring the Graces by the Light of the Moon

By Celina Roybal, alumnus of the St. Joseph Worker Program of Orange, California Second Sunday of Lent Matthew 17:1-9 “From the shining cloud the Father’s voice is heard: This is my beloved Son, hear Him.” In today’s Gospel, the mountain is a place of prayer outside of the everyday world where a luminescent encounter with… Read more »

Ash Wednesday Reflection: Expect the Unexpected

By Katie Mulembe, Catholic Volunteer Network Staff and Franciscan Mission Service Returned Missioner My mission in Zambia turned out to be nothing like I expected. Before I left, I had spent a lot of time researching the country, learning about the current status of abject poverty and HIV/AIDS in the region, deciding on the best… Read more »