What is JVC Magis?

JVC Magis is a two/three-year service program for non-married college graduates who are former Jesuit volunteers.  (For more detailed information about requirements see the program  application). Its mission is prepare leaders to advance the apostolic work of the Jesuits and the Catholic Church by serving Catholic and Jesuit apostolates in the Chicago area as well trained professionals.

JVC Magis Volunteers

JVC Magis provides a unique opportunity to former Jesuit Volunteers to live out the Jesuit ideals. As men and women for others, JVC Magis volunteers find great joy in knowing they are serving others. They are able to put their faith into action in both the apostolates in which they serve and the faith-based communities in which they live. 

  • Ideal candidates for JVC Magis are bright, enthusiastic single men and women who feel called to do more. JVC Magis volunteers have completed at least one year of JVC service. (See more detailed information about requirements on our application.)
  • Applicants should have a college degree.   JVC Magis welcomes graduates from institutions other than Loyola, as well as those from all ethnic and cultural backgrounds.
  • JVC Magis volunteers live a simple lifestyle during their two/three-year commitment.  They receive a modest stipend, out of which they pay for rent, utilities, food, and other basic items.

Service & Graduate Studies

JVC Magis seeks men and women who are enthusiastic about extending the spirit of service that was started in their initial JVC experience. Participants serve as full-time, 30 hours a week, professionals in Catholic/Jesuit Apostolates in the city of Chicago.

As employees of various agencies, JVC Magis volunteers are expected to observe agency policies related to their service. JVC Magis volunteers receive health insurance, through Loyola University Chicago.

So that JVC Magis volunteers may effectively serve in their apostolate they are provided with many supports. The primary support is graduate courses in their selected field of study, which lead to a master’s degree in. JVC Magis volunteers begin their graduate in the fall after beginning the program in August. They continue their graduate studies for the next two or three years, depending on their program of study.

All JVC Magis Volunteers must serve in an apostolate that is Catholic and/or Jesuit. This may narrow the service options for the volunteer. However, one of the missions of JVC Magis is to support the work of the Catholic Church and the apostolates of the Jesuits.

The following graduate degrees are offered through JVC Magis: social work, divinity, pastoral studies, spirituality and social justice.  (Dual degrees are not offered through JVC Magis.) These are the only degrees offered through the JVC Magis Program.

Specific Master's Degree Program Information:

Community Life

All JVC Magis volunteers live in community with other participants. Community life provides opportunities for professional support, personal growth, and spiritual development.

Communities live in modestly furnished houses located by the JVC Magis volunteers. Volunteers generally live among those similar to those they serve.  Out of the small stipend the volunteers receive, JVC Magis volunteers pay for rent, as well as utilities and other basic costs of living.

Community life is best compared to family life.  Community members share evening meals, pray together, do the household chores, spend time together, and support each other.  Community life thrives when members think of the community first, rather than themselves first.  Mature, effective communication is also a key to successful community living.

Community is a great source of professional support because JVC Magis volunteers come home from work to a community of fellow students and service workers.  Over dinner or watching TV in the living room, communities can talk about their school day, gather ideas from each other, and encourage each other. 

If we are going to use the word [“community”] meaningfully we must restrict it to a group of individuals who have learned how to communicate honestly with each other, whose relationships go deeper than their masks of composure, and who have developed some significant commitment to “rejoice together, mourn together, and to delight in each other, make other’s conditions our own.”    
                       - M. Scott Peck, M.D., The Different Drum (1988)


An active spirituality is at the core of all aspects of JVC Magis. Volunteers share their own faith journeys with those they serve. Communities pray together and encourage the spiritual development of each member.

An active faith is at the core of all aspects of JVC Magis. Volunteers recognize that they are called by God to use their talents to serve others.  Communities pray together and encourage the spiritual development of each member.

"Lord, teach me to be generous. Teach me to serve you as you deserve; to give and not to count the cost ..."
                                                      - St. Ignatius' Prayer for Generosity 

JVC Magis volunteers participate in retreats, days of reflection, spiritual direction and faith sharing.

Applicants need not be Catholic to apply.  However, all applicants must be comfortable and willing to live and work in a Catholic environment. 

Simple Living

JVC Magis challenges each volunteer to live a simple, reflective lifestyle and to be intentional about the use of money, time, and material possessions.  Simplicity is the emptying of self for the sake of personal transformation, presence to others in our lives, and service to the poor and marginalized members of our society.  By simplifying our lives, we strive to remove those obstacles that inhibit our closeness to God and others.

A commitment to live a simple lifestyle involves focusing on people - others as well as ourselves - and on basic needs, rather than material possessions.  The JVC Magis experience provides an opportunity to learn the difference between necessities and luxuries.  By working with people who have immediate needs, volunteers become more aware of the basic needs that are not met for many and of over-consumption by others.  Combined with working for and with the oppressed, a simple lifestyle is a living expression of a commitment to a just world where all people's needs are met.

Living simply is an individual, communal, and global challenge that continues long after JVC: Magis.

Social Justice

Jesuit Volunteers are motivated by faith to take an active part in the healing and reconciliation of a hurting and troubled world.  This call to justice finds its roots in faith in God and belief in the dignity of all people. 

JVC Magis encourages and nurtures the empowerment of the poor by supporting programs that allow people to help themselves.  Magis volunteers work with others who are dedicated to serving people and providing for the physical and spiritual needs basic to human dignity.  Volunteers also work for peace and justice by examining the root causes of injustice and by becoming aware of how our attitudes and behavior affect others.  We are called to change the attitudes and structures that create poverty, perpetuate injustice, and waste the earth.