“Through the desert God leads us to freedom” is the theme of Pope Francis’s 2024 Lenten Message. Beginning in the Book of Exodus, Pope Francis said that when God reveals God’s self, the message is one of freedom: “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery” (Ex 20:2). Pope Francis asks us to consider those things that we cling to that perhaps need to be left behind so we can grow in the freedom of God’s love.
IVC service corps member John Gradowski, now in his sixth-year volunteering at partner agency Friendship Place in Washington, D.C., knew from the start that his placement there felt right. The agency works with those experiencing homelessness and unemployment to help them obtain stable housing and jobs and rebuild their lives. John thought he could make a real impact there, and he has.
Dar Al-Hijrah Islamic Center, a mosque and Islamic Center in Falls Church, Virginia, provides extensive social services to a vibrant and diverse Muslim community. With a congregation of over 3,500 members representing over fifty countries, the Center’s comprehensive support programs include career training and placement, a food bank, dental care and serving thousands of hot meals annually. Recently, the Center has taken on a new and urgent role: supporting newly arrived Afghan refugees.
Are you retired or finished raising your family? Do you want to give back, enrich your spiritual life, and build community with other mature adults? Register now and learn how you can deepen your faith and make a difference in the world.
Ignatian Volunteer Corps President and CEO Mary McGinnity was featured on the new episode of the AMDG Podcast presented by the Jesuits of Canada and the United States.