Choosing a post-graduate service program is a big decision and much of your discernment centers around the question, “What will the year be like?” Bon Secours Volunteer Ministry could be the right program for you in the year ahead, and we’ll share some reasons why, but we also invite you to consider the question, “What will life be like after this year?” We know that BSVM alumni speak to the lifelong impact of our ministry and how participation deeply affects them far into the future.
That said, why should you participate in Bon Secours Volunteer Ministry?
In the year ahead:
- We are a small, focused, intentional community, with structured formation and ample staff guidance. You will not get lost in the shuffle or feel like a cog in a wheel here! Every volunteer is supported along their individual journey in the context of the community.
- You are stepping into a legacy. The Sisters of Bon Secours have had a presence in west Baltimore and east Richmond for many, many years and thus your experience is building upon the past work of Sisters and prior volunteers. You’re not starting from scratch, but rather carrying forth the torch of our charism.
- See the Program Strengths page or video above for even more information about the year, including meaningful work, commitment to justice, and a focus on faith formation.
Beyond next year:
- If you are planning on professional school: your time with BSVM will not only shape you into a stronger applicant with a wider breadth of experience, but you will find deeper meaning to much of your studies and will always be connecting the dots on how what you’re learning can be used to continue building right relationships and strengthening communities.
- If you are discerning your future career: your time with BSVM will come up in every job interview you have forevermore, we assure you! Your service work and time in community is a hugely influential experience that exists outside of the world of performance metrics, promotions, and salary, and the year will allow you to understand what you most value when it comes to what you do for work.
- If you are considering a religious vocation: your time with BSVM will give you the opportunity to see what life could look like as a religious, as you bear witness to the Sisters’ ministry. In addition to program time spent on faith formation, you may opt into a vocational discernment pathway and use your volunteer experience as a springboard for understanding the commitment to simplicity, faith, justice, and community.
- If you are just not sure what’s next: your time with BSVM will be especially formative. Often volunteers who are most “unsure” about what’s next are the most open to sensing how their gifts are meeting, and can continue to meet, the needs of the world. The volunteer year will guide you to a better understanding of self and shed light on what inspires you to action.
Many years from now:
- Alumni use some of the following words and phrases to describe BSVM, years later:
- A touchstone
- Stays with you forever
- Alumni continue to weave the program pillars into their everyday life, be it living more simply when furnishing their first apartment, or practicing God’s justice by being intentional about where they live or where their children go to school, or developing community by putting time towards relationship building with neighbors wherever they go.
- Alumni have continued to grow their relationships with fellow volunteers, coworkers from their sites, and neighbors they served, years past finishing the program and moving away. Community members meet up all over the country for reunions, coworkers are invited to weddings, and neighbors get baby photos via text from afar. Given a year to focus on relationships leads to a lifetime of treasuring these relationships.
- Alumni take with them an understanding of how social determinants of health shape individuals and communities, and carry a toolbox they can use for fighting against injustice and inequity anywhere.
Begin your application here.