Jesuit Volunteer Corps (JVC) is based on the charism of St. Ignatius Loyola, the fiery Basque founder (1491 – 1556) of the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits). The spirituality of Ignatius, founded on his own dramatic conversion experience and transformation of heart, invites us and gives us the practical and daily “spiritual exercises” to notice and experience God, the Divine, the Sacred, right in the middle of the joys and sorrows, the struggles and chaos of daily life. As Jesuit Volunteers (JVs) we develop a habit of practicing these spiritual exercises, become more conscious of God’s active and compassionate presence with us and more aware of how we might act in a God-centered way, especially in service to others. We find ourselves being transformed into “contemplatives in action.”
Two forms of Ignatian Spirituality that JVC Northwest fosters are the awareness examen, a simple daily prayer “exercise” of listening to God’s voice in our hearts, and the Spiritual Exercises, a brief set of meditations, prayers, and contemplations that can enhance and deepen one’s relationship with God. During their year of service, JVs have ongoing opportunities to learn and share their personal experiences of Ignatian Spirituality during retreats, community gatherings, and optional spiritual guidance sessions.
As founders and supporters of JVC Northwest, local Jesuits provide support and act as relational resources to many JV communities.