Jesuit Volunteer Corps Magazine - Spring 2015

Page 1



Impact: Washington, D.C. Blue Ridge Summit FJV Profiles

30 Years of Jesuit Volunteers in International Service Spring 2015

Board of Directors 2014-15 Lisa Grattan†, Chair Of Counsel Bourne, Noll & Kenyon Summit, New Jersey Tom King†, Secretary Assistant Director for Community Service Loyola Marymount University Los Angeles, California Paul Smith Kirwin†, Treasurer President & CEO Northcott Hospitality Chanhassen, Minnesota


Leadership Message


JVC Today


Mary Baudouin Assistant for Social Ministries Jesuits of the Central and Southern Province New Orleans, Louisiana


Mary Berner President & CEO MPA - The Association of Magazine Media New York, New York

JV Stories: Strength in My Voice and Silence Ingredients and Process Celebrating 30 years of JVC in International Service

John Carron† Managing Director Goldman Sachs New York, New York AnnMaura Connolly† Executive Vice President & Chief Strategy Officer City Year Washington, D.C. Margaret Egler† Regional Counsel Federal Communications Commission San Diego, California Joan Hogan Gillman Executive Vice President and COO, Media Services Time Warner Cable New York, New York


Impact: Washington, D.C.


Blue Ridge Summit—Common Ground


Advancing JVC


FJV Profiles


the last word

Fr. Gregory Goethals, SJ President Loyola High School Los Angeles, California Marcos Gonzales†, SJ Jesuit Scholastic Chicago, Illinois Fr. William J. Kelley, SJ Secretary for Social & International Ministries U.S. Jesuit Conference Washington, D.C. Fr. Michael McFarland, SJ Jesuits of the New England and New York Provinces New York, New York Don Morgan† Senior Director for Advancement Loyola High School Los Angeles, California Mark Ouweleen† Partner Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP Chicago, Illinois Denis Ring CEO Bode International Lafayette, California Sima Thorpe Senior Director of External Relations and Assessment Gonzaga University Spokane, Washington †

Former Jesuit Volunteer


Kathleen Haser, Baltimore 80, 81 Colleen Kennedy, Philadelphia 89 Kara Spak, San Jose 96 Mary K. Zajac


AJ Cabrera, Micronesia 05 Pat Cassidy, Belize 08


Kellene Urbaniak Cover photo: Belize 2014

After over a decade with JVC, working in a variety of roles, I

now step into the role of Interim President with hope and a drive for where our organization is headed. We have such a rich and living history, composed of people and stories that propel us

forward. These stories—some of which you will find in the pages that follow—are what compel me and my colleagues to continue saying yes, over and over again, to the mission of JVC.

This issue of the JVC magazine celebrates 30 years of Jesuit

This is what we are about. We plant

the seeds that one day will grow. We

water seeds already planted, knowing that they hold future promise.

Volunteers in International with our feature article on page

seven. It is evident in the article’s historical recounting of the organization as well as the personal stories it recounts that

the seeds planted by JVs in numerous countries for the last 30

Bishop Ken Untener of Saginaw, A Step Along the Way

years have borne much fruit. I travelled recently to Nicaragua for my first international visit with JVC and participated in

the ReOrientation/DisOrientation retreat with the volunteers.

Though my time there was short, the seeds planted in me by the passion, challenge and commitment of the men and women of

Managua and Ciudad Sandino continue to grow in me each day.

Leadership Message

The magazine also offers a look at how JVC has planted seeds and laid foundations in Washington, D.C., a city that lives a

parallel existence as both a glamorous national capital and an urban community struggling with hunger, homelessness and challenged schools. I invite you to read about the impact our

JVs, our FJVs and our partners have made and are making in Washington, beginning on page 13.

Much of this issue looks back at where JVC has been

internationally and in Washington, D.C., but it also introduces two new JVC Board members—Mary Berner and William

Kelley, SJ—and presents FJV profiles and reflections from staff member Pat Cassidy. Pat notes that the four values of JVC do

not allow our JVs nor our FJVs to be comfortable staying where

they are; my conviction is that in much the same way, JVC as an

Maggie Conley, Interim President

organization must push itself to be open to change and growth.

As Bishop Ken Untener describes in A Step Along the Way, “This

is what we are about. We plant the seeds that one day will grow. We water the seeds already planted, knowing that they hold future promise.” In Nicaragua, in Washington, D.C., and in

countless meetings, retreats, and gatherings which I have been privileged to attend with JVC, new seeds are being planted. I invite you to celebrate that future promise with me.

Jesuit Volunteer Corps magazine is published by the Jesuit Volunteer Corps. Periodical postage paid. Postmaster: Send address changes to JVC, 801 Saint Paul St., Baltimore, MD 21202 Readers can update information online at

Spring 2015


Today 263 51 18

Aspiring to create a more just and hopeful world, the Jesuit Volunteer Corps engages passionate young people in vital service within poor communities, fostering the growth of leaders committed to faith in action.

domestic JVs international JVs

JVs in the US are serving their second years as Jesuit Volunteers

JVs represent Â


states and Puerto Rico

81% of JVs attended a Catholic college/university

66% of JVs graduated from 26 of the

28 Jesuit colleges and universities

The JVC staff gathered in early December 2014 for the annual meeting at the Loyola University Maryland Retreat Center in Flintstone, Maryland. 4


JVs work at different schools, parishes and non profit organizations domestically and internationally.





Legal assistance among


Shelter and transitional housing


Medical services

other types of work

37 U.S. Cities Albuquerque Atlanta Austin Baltimore Berkeley Boston Bridgeport Camden Chicago Cleveland Detroit Houston Kansas City

Los Angeles Milwaukee Minneapolis Mobile Nashville New Orleans New York Newark Oakland Philadelphia Phoenix Portland Raleigh

Sacramento San Antonio San Diego San Francisco San Jose Scranton St. Francis St. Louis Syracuse Tucson Washington, D.C.

6 Countries

Belize Chile Micronesia Nicaragua Peru Tanzania

Strength in My Voice and Silence Jamie Hitro, Philadelphia 13, Washington, D.C. 14

During the past year and a half through two JVC communities and

placements, I continue to learn when to have strength in my voice and strength in my silence.


written instructions for his finances. I asked him, “What else is there for you to do?”

I waited in silence for him to work through his worries. When he couldn’t

At Women Against Abuse in Philadelphia, the goal of the case manager

think of anything, I offered that he needed to rest because it is dangerous

My work focused on preparing these women and families for the next

soon he will be ready to leave. While this provided relief only for the

My role was one of compassionate listening, validation of experiences

solidarity allowed me to be present in his journey.

is to transition clients into safe housing by the end of their 90-day stay.

to drive a car while tired. He agreed and laid back down saying that

step in their journeys, a step that could be scary, stressful or comforting.

afternoon, acknowledgement of his worries and expressing a form of

and emotions, and empowering the women to find strength in their own voices.

This year I am a resident care aide at

I currently am a

Joseph’s House in Washington, D.C.,

companion on

where we provide healing care to

homeless men and women with late-stage

several individuals’

and end-stage AIDS and terminal cancer through physical nurturing, spiritual


companionship and the restoration of

journeys. What a

dignity. I witness a similar spectrum of emotions. I am companioning some

fragile thing that is.

individuals toward independence and

sustainability with their health, while I am companioning others in the last weeks of

their lives toward death. Most of this time is spent in silence, not needing to say the right thing but simply just being.

I currently am a companion on several

individuals’ end-of-life journeys. What a fragile thing that is. One of the residents

has been speaking for days about needing

to pack up his belongings, get his finances squared away and get his rental car to go.

He packs sheets for his mother who passed away years ago. He says

Through both these years, I have learned that I can only be a witness to

on him and removed them more times than we can count. We have

the whole journey with them for I am only a companion for the moment.

would assuage him. We have sat with him as he wears his shoes, ready

wait together.

his journey is not long. He asks for his shoes, and we have put them

other people’s holiness, beautiful souls, and experiences. I cannot take

been packing and unpacking his suitcase for days, thinking the process

In these brief interactions, all I can do is have my shoes on tight while we

to go.

After a week of this, I changed my approach from silence to speaking. I did not tell him that what he was talking about wasn’t real, for his

experience and visions are very real. I told him that it was all settled. His belongings were packed, his car would arrive soon and his sister had

Spring 2015


Ingredients and Process Stories

Benjamin Hill, Andahuaylillas, Peru 14

The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed with three measures of wheat flour until the whole batch was leavened. Matt. 13:33

A week later a Peruvian physical education teacher arrived, and I was

If you asked me at any point in the last three years what I do, I’d say

greatest need matches your greatest abilities. This month of rising was a

I came here to serve. I didn’t come to teach English, I came to help meet

the needs of the Jesuit-run school. As a servant you have to go where the

that I bake bread. I can compare my JVC journey in Andahuaylillas,

time to practice Ignatian indifference and trust that whatever work I was

Peru, to the process of making bread.

assigned to, I would be placed in the right place.

The first step is to mix dough. A good dough is filled with quality

The final step of the bread making process is baking. The baker thrusts

ingredients to maximize the dough’s potential, and the baker trusts

in the rest of the process to realize that potential. At

orientation JVC mixed ideas of social justice, community

living, and Ignatian spirituality together and then trusted to the rest of the JV process to realize my potential.

My favorite step of the bread process is shaping. I was

shaped by the process of in-country orientation, which

began in December. ICO is planned by the experienced JVs in their second and, in our case, third years. It’s a

wild mix of meeting locals, language acquisition, living with host families in Cusco, and acclimating to life at

the loaf into the hot oven. The oven I was thrust into is called Fe y Alegría

I can’t let the difficult days force me to pull myself out of my

worksite. I have to stay

in the oven, in the heat, in the discomfort.

10,000 feet. A good shape depends on putting energy

into the dough. The three month ICO put lots of energy into me through exploring Peruvian cuisine, going on our first retreat, and getting to know the rest of the community.

San Ignacio de Loyola. It’s my work site. The

work is difficult. Keeping the attention of my 30 young students, ranging in age from 5 to

11, and getting them to focus on a 90-minute religion class seems almost impossible.

Maybe mountains will move for the faithful, but children are a different matter.

Baking bread requires confidence. Bakers can’t second-guess themselves after they

throw the bread in the oven. If they take

it out too early, it will never bake properly.

Likewise I can’t let the difficult days force me to pull myself out of my worksite. I have to stay in the oven, in the heat, in the discomfort.

Baking is a one-way process, it can’t be undone. At the end of my two

After shaping, the dough needs to rise again. This final wait came

years here, the baking process of my JVC experience will be impossible

my role at my worksite. I came to Peru with the expectation that I would

know for sure that the Kingdom of Heaven is growing here.

during my fourth month in Peru. This was a time of uncertainty about

be teaching English in a secondary school. After the first week of March I was reassigned to teach physical education at the primary school.


asked to teach religion. Despite all of this uncertainty, I remained patient.

to undo. Perhaps that’s what ‘ruined for life’ means. In the meantime, I


celebrando kuadhimisha celebrating


Years of Jesuit Volunteers in International Service By Mary K. Zajac

In 1983, roughly thirty years after the nascent

beginnings of the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Alaska’s Copper Valley, the Board of Jesuit

Missions, Inc. in Washington, D.C., established a new organization that would offer a

formalized international volunteer program where participants would work in poor communities alongside Jesuits.

Originally known as the International Jesuit

Volunteer Corps, the program incorporated the four values of JVC: spirituality, simple living,

community, and social justice. During its first

year, IJVC placed 10 volunteers in one country. Currently, the program now known as the

Jesuit Volunteer Corps international program, receives nearly 100 applicants for 25 spots in

six countries. The following pages highlight the history of the program and its twin mission of service and formation.

Spring 2015


When Ted Dziak, SJ graduated from

Michigan State in the early 70s, he had

Jesuit Volunteers International Service

Belize Nicaragua

a clear vision of his future: two years in

the Peace Corps, law school back in the States, a high-powered career. That plan beautifully

Micronesia Peru


derailed in 1971. “I was going to be a multi-millionaire corporate lawyer,” Dziak recalls. “But somehow I

got thrown off my path when I went to work with


the Jesuits in Korea [via the Peace Corps].”

That formative experience not only became the catalyst for

his vocation as a Jesuit, but laid the groundwork for his founding of the








The Marshall Islands



now recognized as Jesuit Volunteer Corps international program after




to their international communities, volunteers work in collaboration







parishes, in Nicaraguan community centers and Peruvian social service




in Belize, sharing meals and nightly television rituals in community







of the Southern Hemisphere, typhoons in Micronesia, and sporadic




impacting communities around them through putting their faith into








“I took from my service a very raw sense of the sacredness in the




South Africa






International Jesuit Volunteer Corps, a program that would eventually offer many other volunteers the same international opportunities to discover their vocation as women and men in the service of others.

During its 30 year history, more than 800 volunteers have served in

more than a dozen countries through the program variously known

as Jesuit International Volunteers, Jesuit Volunteers International, and the merger of regional JVCs in 2009. Dedicating two years of service

with and at the invitation of Jesuits, supporting their mission in each region. Volunteers have served in Tanzanian schools and Chilean

organizations. They have formed relationships with their neighbors

homes. In Nicaragua, they have loaned books and games to families

without the means to own these items. They have weathered the heat electricity in Central America. And they have lived lives of service,

struggle and the joy in being human,” says Carlos Rodriguez, Chile 11,

who is pursuing a masters degree of public administration in public and nonprofit management and policy at New York University’s Wagner

School of Public Service as a result of his JVC international experience.


International Jesuit Volunteer Corps is formally established

Renamed Jesuit International Volunteers (JIV)

Ted Dziak, SJ Executive Director

Program goes from 1-year to 2-year




*Independent JV activity prior to the establishment of JVI in 1984

International Milestones

First cohort of Jesuit Volunteers in Belize, 1984 with Ted Dziak, SJ (far right).


Bob Paskey, SJ Executive Director

“My service experience was transformative,” adds Dziak, now vice

spent nine years with the organization, whose name

Loyola University New Orleans. “And that’s what I really wanted for

to emphasize the program’s closeness to JVC. Under

president for mission and ministry and director of the Jesuit Center at

changed to Jesuit Volunteers International (JVI) in order

the volunteers.”

his leadership, the program grew from 40 volunteers in

Early Leadership, 1985-2001

countries; Micronesia was split into the Federated States

three countries in 1992 to ultimately 80 volunteers in 9 of Micronesia and the Marshall Islands, and Peru,


Years of Jesuit Volunteers in International Service

If the seeds for JVC’s international program were planted in Korea in 1971, they took root in Washington D.C., in the early 1980s, when

Dziak, working for Fr. Si Smith, SJ, Executive of the Jesuit Missions

Board, received permission and funding to begin a new, faith-based

international volunteer program. At the time, very few such programs existed, explains Dziak: “We provided workers in the field, so to

speak, in a time where there were very few…[our goal was to] provide able-bodied, idealistic, faith-filled people who could come and not only give, but learn.”

Modeled on the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, as well as the Peace Corps, Dziak called his program the International Jesuit Volunteer Corps (IJVC). His first two challenges were to find both volunteers and volunteer placements. From an office set up in a donated dorm

room at Georgetown University, Dziak wrote to Jesuits world-wide requesting the opportunity to place recent college graduates in

volunteer positions within Jesuit missions. When he received a warm

The poor can only hope in God. To have that experience to know the poor in that way allows you to put your hope in something beyond yourself.

and positive response from Fr. Leo Weber, SJ, president of St. John’s

Chile, Nicaragua, South Africa, Jamaica, and Bolivia (the last three

received 15 applications for 10 volunteer positions. Belize became

volunteer’s work was done in English. DeCola thought it was important

schools across Belize, and Weber became the program’s first in-country

many students had rudimentary Spanish skills and those countries often

College in Belize City, the first challenge was solved. Soon after, Dziak

somewhat briefly) were added. Prior to DeCola’s tenure, most of the

the first recipient of IJVC volunteers, who worked in parishes and

to add Spanish-speaking countries to the program, he says, because

coordinator, a liaison of sorts for volunteers.

allowed the opportunity for social work as well as teaching.

In the second year, Dziak expanded the program to two years to

As the program expanded, volunteer training intensified. “We did a lot

culture; Micronesia was added as a volunteer site; and the program

they were getting themselves into,” DeCola, now assistant dean and

a pre-orientation weekend for volunteers, as well as established a

explains. “We tried to emphasize that they should try to resist as much

of Orientation, six month ReOrientation (on-site), and DisOrientation at

something and just make it ‘better’…that the real experience is picking


their poverty are happy and are living great lives and loving their

Dziak stayed with JIV for six years. He was succeeded by Fr. Bob Paskey,

months in ways we Americans oftentimes might be missing.”

accommodate the time it took for volunteers to get oriented to a new

to improve the formation piece and give the volunteers an idea of what

name changed to Jesuit International Volunteers (JIV). Dziak also added

program advisor at Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business,

three-part training program for volunteers modeled on JVC’s practice

as they could the innate desire we Americans have to get in there and fix

the end of service. By the third year, JVI was also sending volunteers to

up all kinds of things from the culture and from the people, who despite families and teaching us how to spend our day and our week and our

Vin DeCola, SJ Executive Director

JVI merges with the 5 other regions of Jesuit Volunteer Corps (JVC)

to present

Meghan Romey Van Leeuwen FJV Executive Director


Mary Medved FJV Executive Director



Dennis Heaphy FJV Executive Director

DeCola also felt it was important to meet and interview potential


Tom Drexler Renamed Jesuit Volunteers International Executive Director (JVI)




SJ, who, in turn, was succeeded by Fr. Vin DeCola, SJ, in 1992. DeCola

Brigitte Basile FJV Liz Hughes Program Director Program Director

volunteers face-to-face and continued the practice of letting the

In 2015, under the direction of Elizabeth

as he explains, “we felt in the application process we could get a sense of

volunteers with Jesuits in Belize, Chile,

discernment ourselves.”

Tanzania, where students have the

As one of the early volunteers (along with his wife, Leah) in Belize, John

in Swahili. The majority of placements

and international ministries for the Chicago-Detroit and Wisconsin

work in parishes, social ministries, and

effect on both host communities and volunteers. In Belize, Sealey taught

past, communities were often gender-

in basic reading and math. That work and the work of the Jesuits in the

houses or apartments—on a small island

the idea of a faith that does justice,” he says.

in an urban Santiago, Chile—but still host

Sealey, who later became a program director under DeCola from 1995

responsibilities for the coming week, a touchstone of life in JVC. But the

time. In Peru, volunteers worked in child centers, so families were often

the program.

urban parish work. Nepal placements were in a remote village school,

“The biggest challenges are navigating the cultural difference and finding

poor children of both genders. In these situations, volunteers were able

current JV who teaches computer skills and Ignatian values and runs the

of the global south,” says Sealey. “We’re so preconditioned to look at the

teaching is an amazing opportunity to engage with students and learn

lens, and I think volunteers have the grace and the invitation to see a

taught during the past four months of teaching.”

program’s coordinators choose placements for the volunteers because,

Hughes, the program now places

who would be a good fit for a certain placement, so we did that kind of

Micronesia, Nicaragua, Peru, and

opportunity to take immersion classes

Sealey, Belize 89, who is currently provincial assistant for social justice

are still in schools, but current JVs also

Provinces of Jesuits, was a witness to the growth of the program and its

in community centers. Although in the

theology at a boy’s high school, as well as tutored adults in the evening

specific, men and women now share

community, he says, gave him the opportunity “to see and understand

in Micronesia, a rural community in Peru,

to 2001, recalls the diversity of the volunteer experience during that

their entry into the local culture. In Jamaica, there was teaching and

We emphasized that they should try to resist . . . the innate desire we Americans have to get in there and fix something.

weekly spirituality and community nights, where they divide community greatest adjustments are still the ones experienced by every volunteer in

formerly an elite boarding school for boys reclaimed by the Jesuits for

my place in a cross-cultural context,” says Ryan Knott, Tanzania 15, a

“to see the world and the Gospel itself from the perspective of the poor,

German Club at St. Peter Claver High School in Dodoma, Tanzania. “But

world, look at political problems, look at global events from a certain

with them; I can say for certain that I have learned just as much as I have

different view.”

Which is the hoped-for impact of such service.

“The poor can only hope in God,” he continues. “To have that

experience to know the poor in that way, I think, allows you to put your hope in something beyond yourself.”

“We wanted these young people to have this experience—and the

important thing was what they got out of it,” says Vin DeCola. “A

common refrain we would hear over and over again was ‘I got much more than I gave.’”

Current Country Profiles Tanzania



230 JVs have served since 1984

75 JVs have served since 1995

Language: English, Belizean Creole

Languages: English, Swahili

Work: teaching, reading programs at prison and in schools, pastoral ministry, social services

Work: teaching, counseling, and campus ministry in Jesuit primary and secondary schools

Like many volunteers, Nuzzolese had graduated

from a Jesuit institution (in this case, Boston College) and was motivated to apply to the international

program because of that experience. “I thought a lot about the Jesuit values of using our gifts and talents in the service of others,” she says. “I wanted


Years of Jesuit Volunteers in International Service

something that could strengthen

what Boston College had taught me—that it was

more important to develop who I was, rather than what I did.” Community became the core of Nuzzolese’s volunteer experience.

She worked at Proyecto Generando Vida, the Generating Life Project, facilitating a microfinance bank for women in the neighborhood, and formed an intense bond with the two Nicaraguan co-workers. Her relationship with her community mates also became a crucial and

life-changing part of the experience. “Living in community shaped everything,” reflects Nuzzolese. “I learned about love and loss in

extremely profound ways. If the Nicaraguans were our teachers, then

The Volunteer Experience When Margaret Nuzzolese disembarked from the plane in Nicaragua in 2006, the heat and the poverty assailed her immediately. She witnessed children begging for money, underfed horses toting carts; she smelled

the acrid odor of burning trash. All of this “kind of stunned and shocked me in a way I didn’t expect,” recalls Nuzzolese, now Arrupe Program Director at Boston College. “I think right away I was pretty nervous

about all the things I would see and encounter, but I think deep down my faith led me to a deep belief that I was exactly where I was meant to be:

to learn from the Nicaraguans, to walk in their culture for a bit, to try to form relationships.”

my community were my classmates, the people with whom we could

converse and learn together.” Nuzzolese’s community did everything together—from prayer to grocery shopping to reading quietly in the

front sala to playing games. “Being able to struggle together and love

together was enormous,” says Nuzzolese. “I often think of it as the best graduate school that I could have ever have gone to.”

In 2009, Nuzzolese became a program coordinator on the international program staff, a position that afforded the opportunity to accompany

or walk with volunteers in different international communities and see

the diverse ways in which JVC values are lived in different places from Micronesia to Peru. “It showed me how the Jesuit mission is going to look different in every place you go, but it’s still rooted in the same central mission,” says Nuzzolese.



90 JVs have served since 1996 Language: Spanish, Quechua Work: parish social service projects; teaching English and religion in Fe y Alegría schools

70 JVs have served since 1997 Language: Spanish Work:  teaching in Fe y Alegría schools, microfinance institute; youth recreation; service center and shelter for women; home for people of all ages with disabilities

For Carlos Rodriguez, who began his volunteering in Santiago, Chile,

“It’s been a great privilege and pleasure for me to get to

advisor, Fr. Ruben Morgado, SJ, a Chilean Jesuit, Rodriguez says,

love for others, by their commitment to put their many

in 2011, the experience also centered around relationships. His spiritual “seemed a very very human Jesus [to me].” Through him, Rodriguez

says, “my faith was definitely humanized.” Rodriguez equally treasures

the connections he made with the youth and young adults he worked for

and with through his work at a new campus ministry office a large urban school. When he visited Chile after his volunteer experience, Rodriguez’s friends in the community treated him as family. “It was like going back home.”

know the volunteers as friends and be inspired by their gifts and talents at the service of the poor here, and by their community life,” says Mulligan. “I’ve enjoyed

seeing how they grow their love for the Nicaraguans


Years of Jesuit Volunteers in International Service

and their culture and how their experience here has a lasting impact on them for the future.”


In-Country Coordinators

During his time as executive director, Vin DeCola recalls giving

“The In-Country Coordinator (ICC) was the most important person in

you’re leaving, enough so you can really immerse yourself in the

our program,” says John Sealey. Although Fr. Leo Weber, SJ, the first ICC, joked in JVI’s 10th Anniversary Journal that the job description for the ICC was hard to define, the recollections of him and volunteers who served

volunteers this advice: “Go and try to let go a little bit of the world culture you’re going into. Get to know people and make that your present.”

with him suggest a friend, helper, mentor—someone with whom to share

With the Internet and the omnipresence of social media and other

JVC values.

volunteers. Yet they still make choices to connect to the present, to learn

a meal or a prayer, to turn to for advice or help, to model

Sealey describes the ICC as “someone who could understand where the

volunteers were coming from, their cultural baggage, lens, and heritage,

biases, but he also knew and loved the host culture well.” In many ways,

communication, disengaging from the world is harder than ever for Swahili, to backpack in Chile, to read aloud to each other on a front porch, or to lead student orientations and sporting competitions in Tanzania, to find God in challenges and in each other.

he says, the ICC are also the eyes and ears of the program administrators,

Current JVC international program director Elizabeth Hughes points

direction, and often friendship. That they often become friends who

as an illustration of the volunteers’ commitment to their communities

meeting regularly with volunteers for prayer, conversation, spiritual officiate at weddings and baptisms is a blessed inevitability.

Fr. Joe Mulligan, SJ has worked with volunteers in Nicaragua since 1998. “I try to be a good friend and adviser to the volunteers and

to be supportive to each of them,” he says. This means he visits the JV communities occasionally and invites each volunteer to supper

and conversation twice a year. He’s also available in case of medical emergencies.


130 JVs have served since 1985 Languages: English, Chuukese, Pohnpeian Work: teaching and extracurricular activities in primary and secondary schools 12

to the responsorial psalm, “Here I am Lord; I’ve come to do your will,” abroad and within JVC. “Every day they reaffirm this commitment… by going to work, by being present in community,” she explains. “Oftentimes in challenging circumstances, they say yes over and over again.”

To view additional photos of Jesuit Volunteers in international service go to


25 JVs have served since 1986 Languages: Spanish, Quechua Work: teaching and pastoral ministry in Fe y Alegría schools; social programs for immigrants; homeless shelters

Impact: Washington, D.C. By Kara Spak, San Jose 96

Part of a series of city profiles where Jesuit Volunteers–current and former–are demonstrating their commitment to faith in action.

From the West Wing to the chambers of the U.S. Supreme Court to the

Capitol Rotunda, decisions made daily in Washington, D.C., impact daily life throughout the world. Blocks away from the halls of power are two communities of Jesuit Volunteers who come to the District to learn firsthand about the challenges of life for the disenfranchised. Since 1975, the Jesuit Volunteer Corps has been an active part of life in Washington, D.C., an area with a strong Jesuit influence. Georgetown University and Gonzaga College High School, both Jesuit, are academic powerhouses in the city and beyond. Holy Trinity Catholic Church, a Jesuit parish, is considered the spiritual center of the Former Jesuit Volunteer community in Washington. Jesuit Volunteers work in D.C. with a variety of agencies serving the homeless and mentally ill, at a pregnancy center and a Catholic advocacy center, with a juvenile justice group and a hospice for homeless men and women with HIV/AIDS or cancer. Budding policy makers and maybe a politician or two are drawn to volunteer in the District, but the bigger draw is seeing the connection between policy and how it plays out in the area’s poorest communities. Currently, there are two houses in Washington, D.C. The Horace McKenna, SJ House was named after a Jesuit honored as “Washingtonian of the Year” by Washingtonian magazine in 1977 because of his service to the District’s poor, including founding various social service agencies. Six Jesuit Volunteers currently are living in the McKenna House in LeDroit Park, one of Washington’s oldest and most diverse neighborhoods and home to Howard University.

Four volunteers live in the Elba Ramos House, named for a housekeeper who was murdered with her teenage daughter and six Jesuit priests during the Salvadoran Civil War in 1989. Ramos volunteers live in the Northwest D.C. neighborhood of Petworth. Washington, D.C., is rapidly changing, and these neighborhoods are no exeception. The changes are fodder within the volunteers’ houses for discussion about accessibility, affordability and inclusion and the significant racial and economic divides in the area. “Those neighborhoods are close to the nonprofits in which the Jesuit Volunteers generally work,” said Jenn Svetlik, a Jesuit Volunteer Corps program coordinator based in Washington, D.C. “They are historically diverse, vibrant, lower income neighborhoods that along with much of the city are changing due to gentrification.” Second-year Jesuit Volunteer Jamie Hitro was drawn to Washington by a placement at Joseph’s House, which provides end-of-life care to homeless men and women with late-stage cancer and AIDS. Hitro spent her first year as a Jesuit Volunteer at a domestic violence shelter in Philadelphia. “Before even coming here I thought that D.C., outside of work, would have more opportunities to immerse myself in social justice,” Hitro said. “A couple of my roommates have done advocacy on the Hill. Several of us went to march against police violence and brutality in December.” Hitro said the volunteers also actively engage in free lectures and discussions about social justice and spirituality from speakers traveling to D.C.

Spring 2015


“There are so many organizations that are centered in D.C. it’s easy to get involved in other things outside of work,” she said.

Washington, D.C. Partner Agencies

For Jesuit Volunteer Lindsey Frechou of the Elba Ramos House, who is working at a pregnancy center and maternity home, D.C. offers a wide variety of free activities that fit into her daily pursuit of learning more about social justice, spirituality and the broader community.

Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth

“The areas that the JVs live in there is so much culture and fun and music and art,” she said. “D.C. has so many different cultures merged into one. It’s creating a new culture.”

For Love of Children

Part of that culture is interacting with other volunteers from different organizations as well as a robust network of about 460 Former Jesuit Volunteers. Local orientation week includes a happy hour with former and current Jesuit Volunteers to welcome the new community members to the broader D.C. community. “I’m not even sure a week goes by that I don’t run into a Former Jesuit Volunteer doing work in Washington, D.C.,” said Tom Mulloy, who served in San Diego in 2000 and is now the domestic policy advisor for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. “There are tons of Former Jesuit Volunteers doing work on the advocacy level and the local municipal level. U.S. Senator Bob Casey (of Pennsylvania) himself is an FJV.” There is a growing movement to formalize the Former Jesuit Volunteer community in D.C., including a recent Lenten retreat. Mulloy said this is especially welcome because of the transient nature of the area. “I think there’s a real clamoring for it here,” he said. “There’s a real urge to be plugged into a network of people who think and feel and are concerned about the same things.” At the Jesuit-run Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Justine Javier, coordinator of youth ministry, works with the children of many Former Jesuit Volunteers who seek out the Georgetown parish for its emphasis on social justice ministry and inclusiveness. A Former Jesuit Volunteer (Raleigh 08, Harlem 09) and currently the support person for the McKenna House, Javier said Former Jesuit Volunteers often take advantage of the church’s young adult retreats exploring Ignatian spirituality. For those currently in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, Javier said Washington, D.C., offers a real opportunity to learn from both direct service and advocacy as a means to social justice. “There are just so many passionate people in D.C.,” she said. “To be surrounded by that is really energizing. Whatever the particular social justice issues that a Jesuit Volunteer is passionate about there are so many resources and so many ways to educate themselves about it.” The Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice, sponsored by the Ignatian Solidarity Network, is held annually in D.C. The local Jesuit Volunteer houses host guests, including about 30 fellow JVs, for the event, billed as the largest annual Catholic social justice conference in the United States. While Jesuit Volunteers started as a small group in Washington, D.C., the commitment to serve in the Nation’s Capital has remained consistent for more than four decades, with over 300 JVs serving within its borders. As the District continues to attract Jesuit Volunteers who want to learn both direct service and public policy, it remains home to a growing community of former volunteers, working to meet needs in the Nation’s Capital and working to change policies throughout the world.


Catholics United

Jesuit Refugee Service/USA Joseph’s House McClendon Center Miriam’s Kitchen Northwest Center

10 JVs in Washington, D.C. 460 FJVs in Washington, D.C. area 12,000 individuals served of service JVC has 19,000 Hours provided this year JVC has been committed to 40 Years Washington, D.C.


Partner Agencies

$216,000 annual savings 80% re-apply each year



Partner Agency Profile For less than a dollar a meal, Miriam’s Kitchen served more than 72,000 breakfasts and dinners to Washington, D.C.’s homeless population — the kitchen’s “guests”— in 2013. Always working toward the goal of ending chronic homelessness, the agency also offers case management services, supportive housing and advocacy for permanent supportive housing in Washington, D.C. Founded in 1983, the non-profit agency hired its first Jesuit Volunteer in 2005. The agency currently has two Jesuit Volunteers and five Former Jesuit Volunteers on staff, including executive director Catherine Crum. Crum served in Portland, Maine in 1990. “Almost by definition, a Jesuit Volunteer is committed to social justice and is hardworking, a good problem solver, super fun and optimistic, right?” said Crum. “That’s always the experience we’ve had through the years.”

Miriam’s Kitchen puts our guests at the center . . . working to foster a sense of dignity, change, and belonging.

Crum singled out the “endless energy and optimism” of the volunteers, who work as case managers at the agency. They build relationships with the guests, helping to connect them to mental health services and medical care. They also lead a creative writing group and help manage the clothing closet. Both volunteers this year are trained to administer a citywide assessment tool that helps prioritize the needs of those experiencing homelessness. “Former volunteers can walk into the dining room even after years away and are remembered fondly and greeted enthusiastically,” Crum said. “It is significant to note that half of Miriam’s FJVs continue to work in homeless services and are committed to seeing an end to all homelessness.” Meg Hannigan Dominguez served as a Jesuit Volunteer at Miriam’s Kitchen in 2010 and said there was “no greater joy” than to return to the agency as a senior case manager supervising the Jesuit Volunteers. “In my experiences, the Jesuit Volunteers that come in have consistently demonstrated compassion toward our guests, and a strong commitment to work for social justice,” she said. “Many of the Ignatian values, such as being men and women for others, align with what Miriam’s Kitchen works toward with putting our guests at the center of everything and working to foster a sense of dignity, change and belonging.” Jesuit Volunteers are viewed as full staff members, which Dominguez said when she was a volunteer “always made me feel empowered, appreciated and valued.” “Plus Miriam’s Kitchen has a great and supportive work environment,” she said. “We work very hard, but also make sure to have lots of fun!”

Spring 2015


Blue Ridge Summit Common Ground

Whenever I smell oregano, I am immediately transported back to August of ’98: sitting on a picnic blanket on oregano field with my new community members, sharing our fears and hopes for the upcoming year. The peace and beauty of Blue Ridge is a place I return to often in my memory. Donna Kelly Romero, Jersey City 98, Brooklyn 99

Places can be evocative. They are often where memories are created, and memories are renewed.

For thousands of Jesuit Volunteers, the Jesuit retreat house at Blue Ridge Summit, Pennsylvania, is one of those special places. Since 1975 Jesuit Volunteers serving on the East Coast have travelled to Blue Ridge, on the Maryland-Pennsylvania border, for their JVC Orientation; it’s where JVC began for them and their community. It’s also the place they returned to for DisOrientation. It was from Blue Ridge that Jesuit Volunteers have been missioned during Mass celebrated on the “oregano field,” a clearing on high ground with an expansive view of the valley below. At night they stretched out in the field to see millions of stars. Many a heartfelt conversation has taken place along Buena Vista Road. JVs prayed, played, and gathered around campfires at Blue Ridge. They shared rooms in Loyola, Campion, Faber and Grady House. Built in 1992, Grady House was named after the late Joe Grady, SJ Newark 78, a former JV who as a Jesuit novice made his pilgrimage from Wernersville, Pennsylvania, to Blue Ridge. FJVs have held weekend retreats and gatherings over the years at Blue Ridge and will continue to. One group of 30 FJVs who served in the seventies has returned to Blue Ridge every Labor Day Weekend for thirty consecutive years. In August 2015, JVs will come to DisOrientation at Blue Ridge one last time. As JVC consolidates from four to three domestic Orientations and DisOrientations beginning in the 2016 volunteer year, Blue Ridge can no longer accommodate the larger numbers of volunteers. Blue Ridge Summit has blessed JVC, and we are grateful.

Steve Quigley, Wilmington 75, JVC staff 76, 77, returned to Blue Ridge Summit almost annually for forty years. As this issue was going to print, JVC learned of Steve’s untimely death. Look for more on Steve’s life in the fall issue of the magazine.


Blue Ridge Summit represents an important time in my life where opportunities and adventures were plentiful—a feeling I hadn’t had before and haven’t felt since. Deanna Johnson, Camden 06

Little did I know that my nervous first bus journey to BRS in 1975 would ruin me for life. Forty years later the core values and friendships have gifted my life in so many ways. I’ve found God in all things over the past four decades and am full of gratitude that I took a leap of faith in 1975 to serve others and grow in faith. Liz Fay McMahon, Newark 75

It is fitting that Orientation and DisO are held on a ridge. I have never thought of it in quite this way. From a ridge you usually have a good view of what’s around you and to a certain distance. You can see farther than when you are in the thick of things— clarity. You also have some choices about where you go from here. Amy Postel, Richmond 96, staff 97-99

Running alone along Buena Vista Road into the cool green forest, or walking the Appalachian Trail with a friend . . . the emotional highs and lows of saying goodbye to one group of JVs and welcoming the next. . . where my “ruining” began . . . the shared history of hundreds of JVs being welcomed and sent off from the little slice of God’s creation. Michael Amabile, Baltimore 99, staff 02-07

Generous, good, highly motivated people… sleeping under the stars, celebrating liturgy in the oregano fields, playing soccer and frisbee, building lifelong friendships and family and community, reaching out to God, to one another, to the world, and coming back again and again and again to a home away from home...

What are the sacred spaces and meaningful places you knew as a Jesuit Volunteer? JVC would like to highlight them in the magazine. Please send your suggestion to Kathleen Haser, FJV Relations at

Dave Hinchen, founder, JVC East 1975

Spring 2015



JVC recently hosted gatherings of Former Jesuit Volunteers and supporters in Houston, Boston and Chicago. The Twin Cities Jesuit Partnership Council featured JVC at their April gathering.



San Diego

Twin Cities


San Francisco Solidarity on Tap is an ongoing series of gatherings co-hosted by the Jesuit Volunteer Corps and Ignatian Solidarity Network. The events welcome those connected to the Jesuits and the spirituality of St. Ignatius of Loyola for social justice speakers, discussion and fellowship.





William J. Kelley, SJ

Mary Berner Mary Berner, president and CEO of the MPA-Association of Magazine Media, joined the JVC board in February 2015. Berner’s daughter Molly Moriarty is completing her first year as a Jesuit Volunteer and is among the additional year JVs of 2016.

Fr. William J. Kelley, SJ, joined the JVC board in February 2015. Fr. Kelley is the secretary for social and international ministries at the Jesuit Conference in Washington, D.C., where his responsibilities include coordinating and supporting the Jesuits’ social justice work in the U.S. and Canada, and networking with international justice ministries, including the Jesuit Volunteer Corps. “I have met many Jesuit Volunteers and Former Jesuit Volunteers over the past 30 years,” said Kelley, “and I had the opportunity to work closely with them during my six years as a pastor in Camden, New Jersey. I was always encouraged as I watched the way this special year of service deepened each volunteer’s compassion, competence and commitment to the Church’s mission of social justice. I want to do whatever I can to further JVC’s mission of forming young adults for service in our broken world.” Originally from Philadelphia, Kelley has served with the Maryland Province Jesuits since 1973 in a wide array of parishes and academic institutions in Chile, California, North Carolina, New Jersey, and Washington, D.C. Much of his work has been devoted to ministering to Hispanic and urban congregations and to accompanying those who are struggling with issues surrounding immigration. Kelley holds degrees from the University of Scranton and Georgetown University, and has studied at Stanford and the ILADES Latin American Institute of Doctrine and Social Studies in Santiago, Chile.

Upon joining the JVC board, Berner shared, “I’ve always deeply admired JVC for its important work serving the poor and developing young leaders. I am therefore delighted to join the board and to do whatever I can to support the organization and its mission.” Berner has led some of the world’s largest and most successful consumer and business-to-business media companies and brands, including Glamour,, TV Guide, Women’s Wear Daily, Brides, W, and Every Day with Rachael Ray. Prior to joining MPA, Berner was president and CEO of the Reader’s Digest Association, Inc. Berner has served on numerous industry and not-for-profit boards, including Advertising Women of New York, New York City’s Fund for Public Advocacy, and St. Pius V, a school in the South Bronx serving at-risk young women, where she was lead director for twenty years. In addition to the JVC board, she currently serves on the board of Success Academy Charter Schools in New York City. A 1981 graduate of College of the Holy Cross, Berner was one of the first recipients of the Sanctae Crucis Award, which honors alumni who have distinguished themselves professionally and in the service of justice.



1= 2

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Profiles They are so limited in their legal status it felt like a huge blockade to being helpful to them.” In 2001 she applied and was accepted for a fellowship with Gutierrez. “He’s the one I sought out,” she said. “His inner-city Chicago constituents are practically all Latino and he is very well known nationally if you work on immigration and especially if you speak Spanish.” She went from fellow to legislative assistant to chief of staff. “It was a weird mix for me working for progressive grassroots nonprofits to come to a job on Capitol Hill,” she said. “It’s incredible when you’re in a position of power like this. We haven’t achieved

Susan Collins

Susan Collins, Brownsville 90

Chief of Staff Office of U.S. Congressman Luis V. Gutierrez Susan Collins currently is the chief of staff for U.S. Congressman Luis Gutierrez, the senior member of the Illinois delegation in the U.S. House of Representative and a champion of immigration reform. One of her first tastes of the immigrant experience came as a Jesuit Volunteer in the border town of Brownsville, Texas, working in a trailer outside a family detention center. “When I first started, the detention center was like an airplane hangar with a cement floor, cots completely wide open, very refugee like,” she said. “The whole reason they were in there is they had a minor with them when crossing the border. It could be a 20-year-old brother with a 16-year-old brother, a mom with a young daughter. My project served this population exclusively.” She joined Jesuit Volunteer Corps following a year of service in 1989 in Nicaragua through a Georgetown University program. There, she helped women in a small mountain village start their own bread-baking cooperative. In Texas she worked to reunite family members and on asylum cases. “It was really exciting and very rewarding,” she said. “You were out in the middle of nowhere and you were their only hope for any kind of help at all.” She lived in South Texas for more than a decade, working with immigrant families.

legalization for the undocumented but we have achieved legal status for DREAMers (undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children) and legal status for parents of U.S. citizens. I’m in the total thick of that.” As Rep. Gutierrez’s chief of staff, Collins is responsible for the day-today operations of his office, including mentoring and supervising staff based in Chicago and Washington, D.C. She is the principal point of contact between Rep. Gutierrez and other members of Congress, federal agencies and his constituents in Illinois’ fourth congressional district. She also helps direct his legislative agenda, including the successful effort passing the DREAM Act in the House in 2010. Collins also works to educate congressional offices and community groups throughout the country on how to successfully defend families and individuals against deportation, and has personally intervened in hundreds of individual immigrant and deportation cases on Rep. Gutierrez’s behalf. Collins said that Jesuit Volunteer Corps was “absolutely central” to her interest in working on and championing immigration issues. The skills she developed living in a Jesuit Volunteer community have helped to make her a better policy maker and policy thinker, she said. “There is no other thing in my life that set me on this course than my two years of volunteer work and Jesuit Volunteer Corps was right in that,” Collins said.

Tom Mulloy, San Diego 00

Policy Advisor Office of Domestic Social Development United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

“I had a lot of experience doing direct service to immigrants,” she said. “Working with recently arrived immigrant families you get so frustrated.

Approaching college graduation, Tom Mulloy knew he wanted to do something with his Spanish skills that didn’t involve sitting in an office reading, writing and translating. So he joined Jesuit Volunteer Corps and moved to San Diego.


“Jesuit Volunteer Corps represented an opportunity for a kid from Southeastern Pennsylvania — an area without a big immigrant community

Profiles “Policy advocacy at its best is social justice,” Mulloy said. “It is finding a better way to create a more equitable, fair and just society for everyone. Certainly the philosophy and the values and the mission of Jesuit Volunteer Corps continue to animate me.”

Colleen Fitzgerald, San Diego 07

Child Protection Case Management Coaching Program International Rescue Committee

Tom Mulloy

— to build a deeper relationship with the Spanish-speaking community, to work with people to build better lives for themselves and their families,” said Mulloy, who is currently the domestic policy advisor for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in Washington, D.C. “That’s what drew me toward not only JVC but to San Diego. There was an allure to being around people who felt similar concern and similar passion and intensity in dealing with these issues.” As a Jesuit Volunteer, Mulloy worked at the Sherman Heights Community Center. He coordinated activities with senior citizens for the first half of the day and helped run an after-school program for middle school students during the afternoon. After Jesuit Volunteer Corps, he worked for the two and a half years as a counselor and case manager in a drug and alcohol abuse program for Hispanic youth. Mulloy said at that point he thought about going back to school for a social work degree but also realized clearly “how policy making can help or hurt people. That’s where I decided to go. I still felt really strongly about this call for social work but to work on the justice side and on system change.”

Reflecting from her home in Beirut, Lebanon, Colleen Fitzgerald can say definitively that getting rejected from Jesuit Volunteers International was a blessing in disguise. “I think that actually the best thing for me and the way I developed myself professionally was through my domestic JV placement” as a case manager at a San Diego domestic violence shelter, Fitzgerald said. “It built my skills as a case manager and then when I started working internationally I think it helped that I was a more experienced professional.” “The idea of faith in action was also really inspiring to me,” she said. “I was talking about all these things in the classroom while studying political science and human rights and public service. I really wanted to put those ideas in action and that led me to Jesuit Volunteer Corps.” After JVC, she moved to Boston to work in a residential substanceabuse treatment program for a year and then enrolled at Boston College for a master’s degree in social work. The school offers a unique global practice program. “I still had this dream of working internationally and there were points when I didn’t think it would amount to anything but I still wanted to give it a shot,” she said. “I loved social work and it is so closely aligned with the values promoted through JVC.” She started an international internship in Jordan in January 2011, at the dawn of the Arab Spring with democratic uprisings throughout the Middle East. Following the internship with the International Medical

He worked for four years on Capitol Hill before starting his current position, where he advocates for labor and economic policy, social welfare policy and affordable housing. “I’ve been trying to make my best effort to be a voice for folks who usually don’t have a voice at the policy making table,” he said. “But I also work with communities that are underrepresented to empower them. A lot of time you look at the system and think the system doesn’t work and heavily favors powerful interests and lots of money and wealth. In many cases that is true but we have to organize and educate and get involved in the process. I like to work to empower folks.” The lessons learned during his year as a Jesuit Volunteer are with him daily, he said, providing an overarching philosophy he carries into his work.

Colleen Fitzgerald

Stories Corps, the agency offered her a job working in Libya during the country’s Arab Spring and subsequent violent conflict. During her year and a half there, Fitzgerald helped develop a child protection program that was part of the emergency response to the conflict. She moved to Lebanon in August 2013, where she now works with the International Rescue Committee, training child protection social workers who work mainly with Lebanon’s Palestinian and Syrian refugee communities. Lebanon’s population is 4 million; 1.5 million are refugees and about half of the refugee community are children. “Rather than direct assistance to refugees we are trying to build capacity for the local communities so they can support vulnerable children; especially refugees,” she said. “We transmit best practice standards set at the global level and coach and mentor social workers here.” Fitzgerald does not directly counsel refugees through the nationwide Child Protection Case Management Coaching Program. She travels throughout Lebanon training social workers from organizations including the Lebanese Ministry of Social Affairs, United Nations agencies and various NGOs in a job she calls “really, really rewarding.” The ultimate goal is the protection of Syrian, Lebanese and Palestinian children and families. “I counsel social workers to really improve their skills so they can support the area for the long term,” she said. “It’s much better this way. We talk a lot about sustainability and how we can improve their system.” Her alma mater, the Boston College School of Social Work, awarded her with its 2015 Distinguished Recent Alumni Award for her work abroad. Pursuing meaningful work in a place where the needs is very great, Fitzgerald is exactly where she wants to be. For that she credits the Jesuit Volunteer Corps.

Matthew McGarry, Nicaragua 00

Country Representative for Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza Catholic Relief Services While a college study abroad program first introduced Matt McGarry to living overseas, two years in Nicaragua with Jesuit Volunteers International provided the compass for his life of service abroad. McGarry, currently the country representative for Catholic Relief Services’ Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza program, worked at Proyecto Generando Vida as a Jesuit Volunteer from 2000 to 2002, starting off as a “jack of all trades” at the agency. He taught elementary school students, supported a youth group and served lunch in a school cafeteria. Working under the blessing of the Sisters of Zion, the nuns who founded the program, McGarry then developed and ran a microlending program for the women of Barrio el Recreo during the end of his first year and his entire second year as a volunteer. The loans went to women living in Barrio el Recreo for microbusinesses that included selling small convenience store items out of their homes, selling


Matt McGarry

food door to door, buying bulk clothing to sell at markets and a small home-based restaurant. “In just a year and a half we had quite a bit of success,” he said. “These were incredible, incredible ladies and Proyecto Generando Vida was just a fantastic opportunity for me.” McGarry returned to the United States for graduate school at Fordham University and then joined Catholic Relief Services after graduation. He has lived and served in Zimbabwe, the Darfur region of Sudan, Pakistan, Afghanistan and, for the last three years, Jerusalem. He lives there with his wife, whom he met while both were working in Kashmir, Afghanistan, following a devastating 2005 earthquake. The couple has a three-year-old daughter and one-year-old son. McGarry is based in Jerusalem but regularly travels to Catholic Relief Services offices in Gaza and Bethlehem in the Palestinian West Bank. The organization started in the Middle East in the 1940s by providing humanitarian assistance to displaced communities following World War II. Today, McGarry oversees a variety of services from food distribution programs in the West Bank to peace building efforts between Israeli and Palestinian students. The experiences of Jesuit Volunteer Corps guided him through his journeys all over the globe, he said. “JVC was one of the most formative experiences of my life,” McGarry said. “Particularly the lessons learned about subsidiary grassroots approaches, cross-country dialogue, approaching the work with humility and patience and a genuine interest in the dignity and

the inherent value of the people we are trying to serve. It’s been

foundational in my work, certainly, and in my human relations.”


1 Bridgeport 11 JVC community members met up in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, for a weekend in February, prompted by community member Jamie Richardson’s (Tanzania 12) return to the States. L to R Laura Jenkins, Annie Reinking, Marynoelyn Jacob, Jamie Richardson, and Kate Haworth. 2 Kathleen (Donner) Miller and Margaret (Fennesy) French (Avon 75, 76) met with JVC Midwest founder Tom Shea at Margaret’s 240-acre self-subsistent farm near Eatonsville, Washington. Margaret and Kathleen and three other JVs worked with children with disabilities at the Catholic Worker, Our Lady of the Wayside. Kathleen teaches high school special ed students in Tacoma, Washington. In addition to farming, Margaret started a food co-op in Eatonsville. 3 Brenda Tully (Brooklyn 92) writes, “Our group of FJV women try to gather at least once per year on the East Coast to spend time together, catch up on each other’s lives, lend support, celebrate joys, and have fun. We missed Carolyn Hall (Queens 92) this year and wish her and her family well in South Africa! Jennifer Lee Nolan (Brooklyn 91), see In Memoriam, remains with us in memory. Seated L to R: Alissa Alteri Shea (Jersey City 91, Queens 92), Malia Alder Pfister (Jersey City 91), Archer DeGrandi-Caraway (Mary Jo’s son), Paula Lukats (Jersey City 91, Brooklyn 92). Standing L to R: Cynthia Chovan-Dalton (Boston 90, Brooklyn 91), Mary Jo DeGrandi-Caraway (Jersey City 91, Juneau 92), Brenda Tully.


4 Laura Brown (San Antonio 08, JVC NW 09) and Brendan Mackinson (JVC NW 09, 10) were married in October 2014. An intergenerational group of FJVs joined their celebration. Back row L to R: David Morales (San Antonio 08), Lauren Carpenter (San Antonio 08), Sara Kelley (Mobile 08, JVC staff 09 to 11), Bill Mackinson (Micronesia 76), Maria Roselle (JVC NW 09, Portland 10), Elizabeth Coz (JVC NW 08, 09), Elizabeth (Eiland) Figueroa (JVC NW 09), Tamara Setiady (JVC NW 09), Lizzie McQuillan (JVC NW Portland 09), Patrick Flynn (Belize 09), Kevin Kearney (Belize 82). Front row L to R: Megan Reznicek (San Antonio 08), Lucy Mull (San Antonio 08), Kelliann (Coleman) Perez (San Antonio 08, Newark 09), Laura (Brown) Mackinson, Brendan Mackinson, Nicholas Simonson (JVC NW 09), Adair Kearney (Belize 82). 5 Paula Charbonneau (Los Angeles 09, 10) and Bassam Zahid (Vincentian Volunteer 09) were married in Bethesda, Maryland, on January 3, 2015. Joining them (L to R) were Erica

Stories Carroll (Los Angeles 08, 09), Colleen Kerrisk (Los Angeles 10, Washington, D.C. 11), and Meg Hannigan Dominguez (Los Angeles 09, Washington, D.C. 10). 6 Meg Hannigan (Los Angeles 09, Washington, D.C. 10) married Gerardo Domínguez on January 17, 2015, in his native El Salvador. FJVs in attendance were Lily Hannigan (New Orleans 11) as maid of honor, Emily Kavanaugh (Washington, D.C. 09) and Kierstin Quinsland (Washington, D.C. 08, 09) as bridesmaids, Catherine Crum (Portland 90) and Johnny Walker (Newark 04) as ushers, Mike Reddy (Los Angeles 09, who read a prayer from Fr. Pedro Arrupe, SJ, Julie DeMareo (Los Angeles 10), Colleen Kerrisk (Los Angeles 10), Alison Gillmeister (Atlanta 09), Lauren Elliott (Phoenix 09), Ben Ballard (Los Angeles 10), and Shannon Johnson (Phoenix 09). 7 Michael O’Sullivan (St. Francis 11, 12) and Davanne Piccini (St. Francis 12) were married October 18, 2014, in St. Joseph Chapel at Spring Hill College in Mobile. The couple exchanged vows standing on a Star Quilt, part of Native American tradition, they received as a wedding gift from the St. Francis Mission staff, which Michael said connected a significant part of their history together. Many of their Jesuit friends traveled from around the U.S. to celebrate and participate in their day, including Fr. John Hatcher, S.J., president of St. Francis Mission, who presided at the ceremony: (L to R) Br. Pat Douglas, S.J.; Monica Benitez (St. Francis ’10-11); Anna Maria Capote (San Antonio 11); Fr. John Hatcher, S.J.; Davanne Piccini, Michael O’Sullivan, Andrew Vivian, best man (Mobile 10); Tony Lusvardi, S.J.


Colleen English Balderson (Mesa 01) has two children: Christopher Allen Balderson and Anne Meredith Balderson. Colleen practices law in Louisville. 8 Catherine Crum (Portland 90) and Bo Pham welcomed Margaret Graciela Pham in April 2014. Catherine is the executive director of Miriam’s Kitchen and is very excited to work every day with two current Jesuit Volunteers (EJ DeLara and Rachel Ourada) and four FJVs: Adam Rocap (Oakland 02), Bob Glennon (Atlanta 94), Kierstin Quinsland (Washington, D.C. 08, 09), and Meg Hannigan Dominguez (Los Angeles 09, Washington, D.C. 10). 9 Erin Kylene Elliott (JVCNW 01, St. Louis 02) welcomed a daughter, Hazel Mae Elliott, on May 25, 2014, in Boston.

Work and Life

10 Megan Barnes (Baltimore 03, JVC NW 04) won $6,200 playing Wheel of Fortune in October. She was a previous winner on Who Wants to be a Millionaire and Jeopardy. 11 Rachelle Arciago (Philadelphia 09) traveled to Turkey and Syria with George Mason University and Project Amal ou Salam to learn more about the conflict in Syria as part of her studies in human rights and refugees. The photo shows Rachelle with a Syrian girl at a school in Gaziantep, where all 500 children are orphans. “Resources are scarce in every location, but the resilience of each child emerged and gave me hope in the new Syria. . . Like my experience with JVC working with refugees in the local level in Philadelphia, my work here

Lenten Reflections Many Former JVs contributed reflections to online Lenten prayer series in 2015. Cece Aguilar-Ortiz (San Juan 92, JVC staff 93 to 97, 13 to present), Kevin YonkersTalz (Belize 96), Marcos Gonzales, SJ (Micronesia 06) and Brendan Busse, SJ (Belize 01) contributed reflections for “Igniting Our Values,” the online program of Lenten prayer coordinated by the Jesuit Conference. Contributors to dotMagis, a blog of Jurell Sison (Detroit 10) and Elizabeth Eiland Figueroa (JVC NW 09). FJVs and current JVs wrote for Millennial Lenten Reflection, a blog series cosponsored by Franciscan Mission Service and Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good: Jason Miller (Nashville 07), Lindsey Frechou (Washington, D.C. 14), Kaitlin Sullivan (San Jose 10), Matt Gritzmacher (Los Angeles 12), Colleen Kerrisk (Los Angeles 10, Washington, D.C. 11), Jamie Hitro (Philadelphia 13, Washington, D.C. 14), Jennifer Labbadia (Los Angeles 13, Washington, D.C. 14), Jenny Heipp (Sacramento 10), and Fr. Tom Gibbons CSP (Phoenix 94).

Fall 2014 25


















in Turkey with Syrian refugees has deeply impacted me and changed my life, again.” Erin Bishop (Camden 04, JVC staff 05-07) has been named director of the Center for Christian Spirituality at the University of San Diego. The center fosters the spiritual journey of individuals and communities in San Diego through personal enrichment, academic life, professional life, and social justice. 12 In December 2014 Jeff Colledge (West Virginia 77) was in Honduras accompanying Lencan campesinos opposing construction of a dam that would flood communal lands. “The Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH) works with communities opposing destructive developmental projects. In doing so, they and the communities are victims of repression, threats, and violence. Because of this, they like to have international accompaniment as witnesses and as a possible deterrent to violence against them. I spent two weeks with COPINH in their office in La Esperanza and in the community of Rio Blanco. The area has a mainly Lenca indigenous population. My time in Honduras was part of a two-month trip that included time in El Salvador and Nicaragua.” Jeff is standing between the two Hondurans. 13 FJVs who work at Jesuit ministries are participating each year in the Magis program of the Northeast Jesuits to learn more about Ignatian spirituality and the Society of Jesus. At the first seminar in March at Loyola Retreat in Faulkner, Maryland L to R: Christine Gallagher (Phoenix 08), Cristo Rey Baltimore; Kevin O’Brien (Houston 81, 82, staff 90-98, 01-12), director of Magis; Ariel Laguilles (Nicaragua 00), Gongaza High School; John DeCaro (Belize 04), Georgetown Prep; Stew Barbera (JVC NW 90), St. Joe’s Prep and Magis team member; Patrick Gallagher (Mexico 89), Georgetown Prep. 14 The Ignatian Spirituality Project (ISP) national conference in Chicago in March brought together L to R ISP board member Kat Beaulieu (Berkeley 77), program officers Ted Penton, SJ (Raleigh 00), Jordan Skarr (JVC NW 04), and conference participant Kathleen Haser (Baltimore 80, 81, staff 82 to present). ISP offers retreats to persons in transition from homelessness, addiction, and prison. Elizabeth Duclos (Kansas City 95), a professor of American Studies, was inducted into the Salem State University Civic Engagement Hall of Fame in recognition of her longstanding commitment to civic engagement and social

justice. “JVC was essential in shaping who I am. I tell all of my students that my goal in each course is to ruin them for life and I have made service-learning a part of my scholarly agenda.” Steve Katsouros, SJ (Manhattan 81) has been named dean and executive director of the newly established Arrupe College of Loyola University Chicago, the world’s first Jesuit community college, an extension of Loyola University that aims to provide prospective students with the same liberal arts core curriculum classes offered at the university, but at a more affordable cost. Jim MacGillis (Camden 82) has been appointed to serve on the Jesuit Partnership Council of Minneapolis and St. Paul. The council supports various Jesuit ministries in the Twin Cities. Jim is a business attorney at Trepanier MacGillis Battina in Minneapolis. Patrick Manning (Washington 09), an associate producer at Fox News in New York City, worked on the documentary “LGBT Catholics: Owning Our Faith.” The goals of the project are to foster dialogue and encourage greater inclusion and acceptance of LGBT people in the Church. Neil McCullagh (Escondido 89), has been named executive director of Corcoran Center for Real Estate and Urban Action at his alma mater, Boston College. The center will train ethical professionals who see real estate as a catalyst for needed change in marginalized communities. Peggy Prevoznik Heins (Oakland 84, JVC staff 85-87) has been named president of Serviam Girls Academy in Wilmington, Delaware. Peggy was one of the founders of the school nine years ago and has served as chair of the board of directors. Serviam is a Nativity-Miguel model middle school for underserved girls. Emily (Katzfey) Rodriquez (Peru 99) spoke about her experience in Peru at St. Joseph’s “Chew for Peru” event outside Chicago on February 28. “It is an amazing parish with a strong international service component. They have been working with the community of Huaro, Peru, a small village up in the mountains near Cusco to help them build a community center and a musical-instrument workshop for the children to learn a marketable skill. They have worked in collaboration with the Jesuit Volunteers that are living nearby to Huaro. The evening was very special, with a simple meal similar to one that children in Huaro would receive, guest speaker Fr. Kevin Flaherty, SJ who served in Peru for 25 years, and then a Peruvian folkloric dance group that was very talented and entertaining! It was a wonderful experience for

Stories me to reconnect with my time as a JV over 15 years ago. It is so easy to get caught up in my day-to-day life of working full time, taking care of the kids, cleaning the house, etc., that often I forget about what is truly important. Finding God through service to others. That’s what my time in Peru taught me, and it was very nice to have a reminder of that.” A team of FJVs who served in Belize -- Jeff Seymour and Jean Turney (Belize 90), Laura Frederick (Belize 89) organized a campaign to raise money for a new Jesuit high school in Uganda. They have raised awareness about education and Jesuit endeavors around the world and almost $2,000 so far by challenging high school students to give up using their mobile phones and other mobile devises for 24 hours and donating $24 to improve the quality of education for students at Ocer Camion Jesuit College. The campaign is an activity of eChange Endeavors, founded by Laura Frederick. Emily Wallace (Tanzania 08) writes: “I have lived in Swaziland for over a year now. I work as the learning materials coordinator for World Vision International. Before this, I was living in Uganda and worked as the resource adaptation trainer for World Vision International. My position is global, and so I train Ministries of Education, World Vision staff and staff from similar organizations on creating, purchasing, adapting, and adopting various kinds of teaching and learning materials that are appropriate for their contexts and language needs.” Christopher Wilson (Los Angeles 10) and his trio released a jazz album in October 2014. “One of the compositions on it, ‘Feelin Better’ I wrote at my JV placement, Bread and Roses!” The album in available on iTunes. Darren Wallach (Nepal 04), assigned his seventh grade at St. John’s Catholic School in Brunswick, Maine, to research favorite charities; Darren chose the top four for a final presentation, with the promise to make a personal contribution to the winning charity project: JVC! The class wrote to JVC, “Mr. Wallach had worked as a Jesuit Volunteer before so he had experienced the change as a person, and worked with those who need it most.”

JVC welcomes news and updates about life transitions and accomplishments from Former Jesuit Volunteers. Please include FJVs in photos of children. Publishing news and updates from Former Jesuit Volunteers does not imply JVC’s endorsement.





FJV Authors

In Memoriam

15 Margaret Hughes (Fresno 84) died of cancer on December 25, 2014. She worked at Brooklyn Congregations United. After graduating from Fordham University, Margaret was a JV in Fresno, California. It was only a beginning in a life dedicated to the service of others in the spirit of the Jesuit tradition. Margaret returned to New York and obtained her masters at Columbia. She was a social worker in New York City and dedicated many hours to community organizing. She worked at Lenox Hill Hospital, Catholic Charities, Good Old Lower East Side, the Lower East Side Tenement Museum and PICO as well as running political campaigns for local leaders. For several years Margaret served as a support person for JVC communities in New York City. Margaret was a diehard activist for liberal causes. She travelled the world including a two and a half year mission for Franciscan Mission Service in Kenya where she taught high school. She also went to Guatemala and Honduras to help the needy. Margaret also spent three months living in the backcountry working for the National Park Service in Alaska. A tireless advocate for peace and justice, Margaret was a constant at Pax Christi rallies and other peaceful demonstrations. When diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer Margaret took on the banner of educating others on the importance of MRI exams for early detection in dense breast tissue. She continued a spirited and spiritfilled life for 3 years after her diagnosis. She leaves her beloved husband, Eddie Bellavigna, and her 12 year-old son, Thomas.


16 Mikael Meyer, Nicaragua 00 died on April 13, 2015, from an aggressive form of brain cancer. Mikael was a popular Spanish teacher and speech and debate coach at Bellarmine College Preparatory, a Jesuit high school in San Jose, California. A talented musician, he often volunteered his talents as a piano player for Bellarmine musicals and liturgies. Mikael continued to teach and coach while undergoing aggressive chemo treatments last year. Ariel Laguilles, who live in JVC with Mikael, said, “Mike was a strong presence within our community in Managua. He was not only dedicated to our JV community but his work community as well; he really knew what it meant to live in solidarity with those we served, and his selflessness and warm personality earned the trust and respect of those he met.”Mikael was a graduate of Seattle University. In addition to his colleagues and many friends, Mikael leaves his wife, Maggie, and daughters, Grace, 5, and Nina, 2. 17 Jennifer Lee Nolan (Brooklyn 91) passed away on November 16, 2014, from sideeffects related to treatment for acute myeloid leukemia. She was a staunch and wonderful friend to countless people across her life, an unwavering wife and partner to her husband, Michael, a nurturing and engaged mom to her three children, Will, Ellie, and Bailey, a reliable daughter-in-law, and a devoted member of the Lee clan. Jen was an avid triathlon participant, her enthusiasm encouraging scores of women in her life to train and complete numerous events with her. These included her sisters, Mary Kathryn Lee-Harner and Rebecca Lee (New Orleans 11), and fellow FJVs of her era, Paula Lukats (Jersey City 91, Brooklyn 92) and Brenda Tully (Brooklyn 91). The photo shows Jen after crossing the finish line in the Danskin Sprint Triathlon, her first, accomplished with the support of her family’s raucous cheering along the way. Jen is greatly missed.

Begona Echeverria (Washington, D.C. 88) published an historical novel, The Hammer of Witches. Begona is a professor of education at University of California Riverside. Drawing a nuanced, detailed, rich portrait of early modern Basque society to tell a gripping story of love, betrayal, and sacrifice in a world turned upside down, The Hammer of Witches delves into the dark places of the human spirit and shows that even in the face of tremendous evil, justice can prevail. Adam Plantinga (Houston 95) recently published 400 Things Cops Know. Plantinga is a police sergeant with the San Francisco Police Department. A work of nonfiction, it attempts to debunk the myths about police work made popular on TV and includes personal vignettes, trade secrets and observations about the criminal mind. Nancy Small (Belize 84, Buffalo 85) published Seizing the Nonviolent Moments: Reflections on the Spirituality of Nonviolence Through the Lens of Scripture (Cascade Books). Nancy is a hospice chaplain and spiritual director in Western Massachusetts. The book includes stories of contemporary peacemakers woven throughout and offers lessons for living a spirituality of nonviolence for our times. Prophetic words from the U.S. Catholic bishops emphasize the essential role of peacemaking in renewing the earth. Questions following each chapter inspire personal reflection and make the book a welcome resource for classrooms, parishes, and small groups. .

Tell me how you first got involved in with JVC . . . I was a sophomore at Providence College when I saw a young woman sitting at a table surrounded by information about a post-graduate volunteer program. I decided to talk to her after overhearing her conversations with others about international service work. All I remember about that conversation was that I was really excited about the idea of JVC and that she told me I had plenty of time to think about it. I found her recruiter business card in an old wallet of mine last year.

the last word

What do you find most challenging about JVC? As an FJV and JVC staff member, I continue to be challenged by the four values. I aspire to live out these values fully in my everyday life, knowing that I do not do it perfectly, personally or professionally. Living the values continues to be a humbling experience, as it should be. What’s the best/worst thing to happen since you started working with JVC? Best: Traveling around the world to new (Peru and Tanzania) and old (Belize) places, eating amazing cultural cuisine and purchasing beautiful local art from the artists themselves. Worst: Subsequent travelers’ diarrhea and plummeting bank account. If you could change one thing about JVC, what would it be? I would increase racial diversity on all levels of the organization – from volunteers to board members. As an organization made up of primarily white individuals, there is an unequal representation of necessary perspectives and voices at our table. We have a real responsibility to change this about our organization and I believe we are coming to understand and live out this responsibility more fully. What do you wish other people knew about JVC? JVC is an organization that cherishes its history and tradition while at the same time is deeply reflective about how it can grow and transform in time. This is what makes JVC a strong organization and what continues to drive the organization in the living out of its mission. What do you think will change about JVC over the next five years? This year I have seen an increase in the number of applicants who share that they were inspired to apply to JVC through the words and actions of Pope Francis. I envision this influence increasing as the pope continues to preach and live the true Gospel which I believe connects more fully to the expression of the beliefs and values of the millennial generation. How would your friends and family describe you? I think they would describe me as a peaceful, reflective and compassionate individual. They would then probably add some snarky comment about my boisterous laugh and love for all things Beyoncé. Both are true. If you were to cook a special dinner, what would you prepare? I would throw vegetarianism out the window and prepare one of my favorite Belizean dishes which I crave regularly: stewed chicken, rice and beans, with a side of potato salad. I miss preparing this dish. My vegetarian version just does not compare to the real deal.

Pat Cassidy Pat joined the JVC staff as a program coordinator in 2010 after serving for two years as a Jesuit Volunteer in Punta Gorda, Belize, where he worked in retreat ministry in Mayan villages and taught 4th grade. Pat has a unique experience of the JVC program having worked for two years with domestic volunteers, one year with JVs in Belize and Washington, D.C., and since 2014 exclusively with JVs in the international program. A graduate of Providence College, Pat is from Connecticut. In Baltimore he cofounded an intentional former volunteer community. Avocations? Pat is a dedicated yoga practitioner and enjoys biking, local theater and restaurants. Spring 2014



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