Mercy Works

What is Mercy Works? 

Mercy Works, a joint initiative between Campus Ministry and the Center for Social Concerns, seeks to model and invite students into the integration of service and faith-based reflection.

Students will engage in weekly service in the South Bend community in small groups. Student small groups will also gather for prayer and meals to reflect together on their experiences of receiving and extending mercy both on and off campus in light of the Gospels and the Catholic Social Tradition, including the work of scholars such as Henri Nouwen.

Program elements include:

One-month commitment -- new groups start each month of the academic year 
With a small group of 2–5 students, serve 2–4 hours each week at the organization where you're matched 
Gathering for meal/prayer with your small group each week
Entire program gathering at the end of each month for dinner and reflection

Why Mercy Works? 

Mercy is at the core of Pope Francis’s message. He writes: “Jesus Christ is the face of the Father’s mercy. These words might well sum up the mystery of the Christian faith.” The Christian life is one of receiving and in turn sharing Christ’s mercy. Jesus compels and calls us all to go out and to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, shelter to the homeless, clothe the naked, and ultimately to share his loving mercy with all of our neighbors. It is not simply a duty, but a part of our identity as followers of Jesus.

This is at times a difficult call to follow as a student. Whether it's not knowing how to serve, how to see those who are in need or feeling uncomfortable doing it on one's own, there are many barriers to doing the works of mercy. Mercy Works facilitates the opportunity for students to engage in the works of mercy, create community, and grow deeper in relationship with God.

What are the kinds of work one can engage in as a part of Mercy Works? 

Partnering with community sites, we invite students to participate in the corporal and spiritual work of mercy named by the Church. Our community partners include the following local agencies: Chiara Home, DePaul Academy, Dismas House, Healthwin, Logan Center, Our Lady of the Road / St. Peter Claver Catholic Worker

How do I participate? 

Fill out the following form and one of the Mercy Works facilitators will reach out to you to talk personally about participating. At that meeting, you will have the chance to talk about what you're interested and decide if you would like to participate.  

Mercy Works Interest Form

Background Checks: Once confirmed of your participation, you may find that you need to have a background check completed. While not all community partners require that student volunteers complete a background check, many do. Please check with your community partner to verify if you will need a background check for your Mercy Works experience. If your community partner does require a background check, please submit this background check form. Please also note that the background check process can take several days and many organizations require the process to be completed before a volunteer's first on-site visit. Please contact your community partner early about what they require!

Contact Us

We want to hear from you! If you have questions about Mercy Works, or want to learn more, please reach out to us. 

Assistant Director of Retreats and Pilgrimages

Campus Ministry

Director of Community-Based Learning Program

Center for Social Concerns


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Upcoming Events

August 2020

Application Deadline | Fall 2020 Social Concerns Seminars
Wednesday, August 12, 2020 (All day)