Vincentians in Action (VIA) was introduced to support students working with the DePaul Community Service Association. It helps them make sense of their experiences and develop leadership skills as they perform service projects. VIA “provides an interfaith, reflective framework in which to promote, enhance, and integrate the values of service, community, and civic engagement on behalf of the poor and marginalized.” It was created because Vincentian values were not being discussed during reflections on service. Students were afraid of offending each other by speaking about their respective faiths. Eventually, people from all faith backgrounds were able to relate to Vincent de Paul’s life and work as they did their service. A VIA curriculum has been formed, based on Theodore Wiesner’s “ways of spiritual life.” These are stages “through which a person of faith passes when engaged in service.” Each stage is defined and together they recognize that Vincentian service is “a spiritual undertaking and a quest for solidarity with the poor.” The structure of the VIA curriculum is discussed in detail. Its success has been demonstrated in the accomplishments of its graduates.
Nass, Karl and O'Donoghue, Siobhan
"Committed to Poverty Reduction and Spiritual Growth: Vincentian Communities of Reflection, Action, and Solidarity,"
Vincentian Heritage Journal: Vol. 28
, Article 21.
Available at: http://via.library.depaul.edu/vhj/vol28/iss2/21