admissions

How to Prepare for Your JVC Discernment Conversation

Katie Gosen (Hartford 2009) serving food at JV placement site.

Part I: Individual Reflection

After your initial interview, you will receive an invitation to attend a discernment conversation with a group of prospective volunteers and JVC Staff. Discernment conversations are a space for deep reflection about your motives for joining the Corps, the ways in which your day-to-day lifestyle might shift , and other realities of being a JV.

As you reflect on whether or not JVC is a match for you, here are some things to consider:

1. Your commitment to vital service 
In a culture that values what people have over what they give, JVC is an opportunity to commit to the dignity and well being of others. Volunteers serve full-time at one of almost 200 partner agencies across the world.
What are some of the reasons why you feel called to serve?

2. Your commitment to exploring your faith and spirituality 
Jesuit Volunteers commit to weekly spirituality nights with their community where they think critically about their beliefs, the beliefs of those they serve, and the intersections of faith and justice.

What does your faith background look like? What are some of the questions you have about faith that you hope to explore more fully while in community? How open are you to talking about your faith and spirituality?

3. Your commitment to living modestly and focusing on building relationships over materialism 
Jesuit Volunteers commit to leading a simple lifestyle. This includes spending time with others in an intentional way that invites both authenticity and vulnerability with the hope of deepening connection to self and others. Additionally, this includes volunteers adhering to their monthly stipend in a gesture of solidarity with those they serve, and minimizing use of technology in an effort to remain present to those in their community.

What do you notice coming up for you in thinking about living within a stipend? Do you have any concerns about detachment from technology? How might life in an intentional community be challenging for you?
 

Casa MLK on the California Cable Cars in downtown San Francisco! (2010)
Casa MLK on the California Cable Cars in downtown San Francisco! (2010)
Cara Caponi hard at work shucking corn with one of her students during Mes de Misión. (2010)
Cara Caponi hard at work shucking corn with one of her students during Mes de Misión. (2010)

Part II: Small Group Discussion 

During the Discernment Conversation, you will enter into small groups to share your reflections, consider other perspectives, reflect on the realities of living in an intentional community.

What questions do you have that you might bring to this space? How can your questions generate conversation around committing to the program for both yourself and others?