What is Unique About Faith-Based Service

You might be asking yourself what makes Catholic Volunteer Network programs different from other programs out there. There are actually four ways that our programs are unique – we like to refer to these as our four pillars because they serve as the foundation for nearly all of our member programs.

Social Justice

To us, social justice is a way of seeing the world through the lens of the Gospel. Jesus prompts us to ask questions about the root causes of poverty, injustice, and inequality in our world. We are called to be a source of light for our communities as we seek to promote justice for all. Our volunteer programs are committed to standing with the poor and being agents of positive change.


The service experience can be intense - but you don't have to do it alone! Most of our programs offer the opportunity for their volunteers to live in intentional community. Volunteers share meals and household responsibilities, commit to making decisions collaboratively, and support one another through shared prayer. This emphasis on community helps enrich and deepen the service experience in many ways.


Many of our volunteers cite their faith as one of the primary motivations for their commitment to service. Our programs foster spiritual growth in many ways including regular spirituality nights within volunteer communities, several retreats throughout the year, and opportunities for personal prayer and reflection.


Our programs provide volunteers with many ways to live simply during their time of service. A small living stipend encourages volunteers to become more mindful of their consumption and the ways they choose to spend their money. Shared meals help volunteers reflect more deeply on the impact of their food choices and the benefits to finding local sources for their meals. As the service year goes on, many volunteers find themselves refining what it means to live simply.