Rules and guidelines for required service
Our Christian Service and Theology Departments, through all of their efforts, strive to encourage St. John's Jesuit students to understand that they are called to serve the less fortunate and marginalized of our world, as Christ did. The Mission Statement of St. John's Jesuit reads as follows: Each student achieves his greatest potential in a diverse, Christ-centered atmosphere distinguished by proven academic success and a commitment to serve as a man for others. The phrase "man for others" comes from an address given by the former Father General of the Jesuits, Pedro Arrupe, S.J. to the "Tenth International Congress of Jesuit Alumni of Europe," in Valencia Spain in 1973. In the address Fr. Arrupe, S.J. said "Today our prime educational objective must be to form men-for-others; men who will live not for themselves but for God and his Christ - for the God-man who lived and died for all the world; men who cannot even conceive of love of God which does not include love for the least of their neighbors; men completely convinced that love of God which does not issue in justice for others is a farce."
To reach their greatest potential, St. John's Jesuit students must use their talents, gifts and minds in service. In this light and guidance the Christian Service and Theology Departments have established the following rules/guidelines in relation to Freshman, Sophomore, and Junior year required service.
- Service is to be done during the school year when students are in their theology classes. (only exceptions to this are St. John's Jesuit sponsored immersion trips such as Guatemala, and Appalachia)
- Students need to serve other humans who are in some way less fortunate (emotionally, physically, economically) than they are. Working with animals is permitted only when it involves service to humans (i.e. physical therapy for special needs individuals with horses or working with people with disabilities who need the assistance of guide dogs).
- Coaching is okay if it meets the criteria in the point above. (i.e. working with people who are, in some way, less fortunate than they are.
- Students are encouraged to serve outside of their comfort zones, so serving in their parish or church or elementary school is highly discouraged.
- Service for required hours has to be completed outside of St. John's Jesuit (i.e. peer tutoring would not count for service hours).
- Service cannot involve immediate family members.
- In order to fulfill the required service hours, the student may serve at no more than two agencies in a particular year. One agency is actually preferred so that students build relationships with the people they serve, instead of serving at multiple agencies just to get the hours completed and never truly building relationships.
- Juniors may fulfill their service requirements through the Christian Service Program that involves committing to serve on a weekly basis for an entire semester. This is done through the Christian Service Department.
Our goal in the Theology and Christian Service Departments is to have service requirements that assist in developing a positive attitude toward service. We believe that the manageable service hour requirements listed below, combined with the rule/guidelines listed above, help to create young men who truly enjoy service and make it part of their everyday lives.
- Freshmen: 10 hours
- Sophomores: 15 hours
- Juniors: 20 hours