40th Annual National Conference on Faith-Based Service

Hosted by Catholic Volunteer Network

Each fall, over 150 staff members of faith-based volunteer programs, campus personnel, and other partners gather for the National Conference on Faith-Based Service. Hosted in a different location each year, the National Conference is an opportunity for those involved in faith-based service to come together to learn new skills, share their experience and expertise, and network with their colleagues.

Each year we feature a series of keynote speakers and offer participants the opportunity to attend valuable workshops on all aspects of program management and operation.

St. Louis, Missouri | Hilton St. Louis at the Ballpark | November 1-4, 2017

|  Registration  |  Travel & Lodging  |  Schedule   

|  Keynote Speakers & Workshops  |  Exhibitors & Sponsors  |  Questions?   |


Please contact us for pro-rated fees for partial conference attendance. We are happy to provide a group discount for any organization with two or more conference registrations. Each member of an organizational group must register individually, select pay by check option, and will be invoiced following verification ($50 discount for each additional registration).

Members$345 for a single registration 
Non-members$410 for a single registration 

Scroll down to the keynotes section for individual tickets to listen to the talks given by Fr. Greg Boyle and Jim Wallis. 

Travel & Lodging

Hilton at the Ballpark
1 South Broadway, Saint Louis, MO 63102
Hilton St. Louis at the Ballpark is a vibrant hotel near Busch Stadium. Situated in the heart of downtown and only 20 minutes from Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (STL), this central St. Louis, Missouri hotel is right next to Ballpark Village, within 100 yards of Busch Stadium and footsteps from the iconic St. Louis Gateway Arch. Experience stunning infield and arch views from your guest room. Enjoy sports, dining, entertainment and drinks at Ballpark Village.
Conference Room Rate: $129/night (rate is available from October 31st - November 6th)
Click here to reserve your room. Cut-off date for room block is October 11th. 
Getting there from St. Louis Lambert International Airport - Hilton at the Ballpark is located 14 miles from the airport. Public transportation is available via MetroLink light rail for $3/trip (exit at Convention Center Station, 1/4 mile from hotel). Taxi rides are available for approximately $35. 

Schedule Overview

Wednesday 11/1
Thursday 11/2
Friday 11/3
Saturday 11/4
3:00-7:00pm - Registration
3:00-7:00pm - Exhibits Open
7:00pm - Conference  Opening
7:30pm - Keynote Speaker: Fr. Greg Boyle
9:00pm - Reception & Book Signing
7:30-8:30am - Breakfast
8:45am - Morning Prayer
9:00am - Workshop Session #1
10:30am - Break/Exhibits
10:45am - Panel Discussion - Volunteers  of Color in Dialogue
12:00pm - Networking Lunch
1:30pm - Break/Exhibits
1:45pm - Workshop Session #2
3:15pm - Break/Exhibits
3:30pm - Panel Discussion: Campus Connections
5:00pm - Free Evening
7:30-8:30am - Breakfast
8:45am - Morning Prayer
9:00am - CVN Membership Meeting
10:00am - Break/Exhibits
10:15am - Workshop Session #3
11:45am-1:30pm - Lunch (on your own)
1:30pm - Panel Discussion: Mother 2 Mother
3:00pm - Break/Exhibits
3:15pm - Workshop Session #4
4:45pm - Break
5:15pm - Mass at Old Cathedral
6:30pm - Social & Cash Bar
7:00pm - Banquet & Awards Ceremony
8:30-10:30pm - Music & Dancing
8:00-9:00am - Breakfast
9:00am - Morning Prayer
9:15am - Keynote Speaker: Jim Wallis
10:45am - Closing Ritual
11:00-11:30am - Book Signing & Refreshments

To view a detailed conference schedule, please click here. 

Keynote Speakers & Workshops

Fr. Greg Boyle, S.J.
Barking to the Choir: The Power of Radical Kinship

Fr. Greg Boyle, S.J., will share how compassion, kindness, and kinship are the tools to fight despair and decrease marginalization. Through his stories and parables, all will be reminded that no life is less valuable than another.
Gregory Boyle is the founder of Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles, Calif. A Jesuit priest, from 1986 to 1992 Father Boyle served as pastor of Dolores Mission Church, then the poorest Catholic parish in Los Angeles, located between two large public housing projects with the highest concentration of gang activity in the city. Father Boyle witnessed the devastating impact of gang violence on his community during what he has called “the decade of death” that began in the late 1980s. In the face of law enforcement tactics and criminal justice policies of suppression and mass incarceration as the means to end gang violence, Father Boyle and parish and community members adopted what was a radical approach at the time: treat gang members as human beings. By 1988, they started what would eventually become Homeboy Industries, now the largest gang intervention, rehabilitation, and re-entry program in the world. Homeboy employs and trains former gang members in a range of social enterprises, as well as provides critical services to over10,000 men and women who walk through its doors every year seeking a better life.Father Boyle is the author of the 2010 New York Times-bestseller Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion. His new book, Barking to the Choir: The Power of Radical Kinship, will be published later this year.
Guest tickets are available for Fr. Greg's talk and book signing reception, please click here for details

Mother 2 Mother - Facilitated by Dr. Christi Griffin, Founder & President of the Ethics Project
A Conversation about Race and the Healing Power of Storytelling

Mother 2 Mother began in September 2014, by Dr. Christi Griffin, founder and president of The Ethics Project, as a means of creating understanding, healing and solutions to racism and over policing in the African American community. The Conversations were launched to a full house at the Missouri History Museum in partnership with the Racial Justice Program of the YWCA and the Missouri History Museum. The idea was prompted by a forum at Christ the King Church following the killing of unarmed teenager, Michael Brown. Christ the King’s pastor, Rev. Traci Blackmon, herself a mother of Black sons, shared her experience at the launch of the Conversations. Gestating only as an idea, it became reality when radio host Carol Daniel contacted Griffin for an interview and encouraged action. Eleven Mothers have shared their stories with thousands of mostly White, attendees in a total of 18 conversations. In April 2016, a Conversation was filmed for a documentary at The National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, TN, at the request of PBS. Excerpts of that documentary were aired twice following the killings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. It will be aired nationally in full this fall.

Jim Wallis
The Bridge to a New America

America was founded by the near-genocide of one people and the enslavement of another. Since that foundation, the United States has now confronted the realized structures and systems put in place at the outset. Soon, in only a few decades from now, the United States will be – for the first time in history – a majority of minorities. This fact underlies much of the political rhetoric and discourse we now see. This session will look at that reality and how “white Christians” need to become more Christian than white.

Jim Wallis is president and founder of Sojourners in Washington, DC. a non-profit faith-based organization, network, and movement whose mission statement calls for “putting faith into action for social justice.” He is editor-in-chief of Sojourners magazine and web site which has a combined print and electronic media readership of more than a quarter million people with several million unique visitors to the website, sojo.net, each year.  Wallis is a bestselling author, public theologian, national preacher, social activist, and international commentator on ethics and public life. His latest book, America's Original Sin: Racism, White Privilege, and the Bridge to a New America, released in January. Wallis has written ten previous books, including The (Un)Common Good and the New York Times bestsellers God’s Politics and The Great Awakening. He is a frequent speaker in the United States and abroad, has written for major newspapers, does regular columns for Huffington Post and TIME.com, and appears frequently on ABC, CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and NPR; on shows from Jon Stewart’s Daily Show to the O’Reilly Factor and Sunday shows like This Week and Meet the Press. Wallis also teaches at Georgetown University and has taught at Harvard University. He served on President Obama’s first White House Advisory Council on Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships and as the chair of the Global Agenda Council on Values of the World Economic Forum. 

Guest tickets are available for Jim Wallis' talk and book signing reception, please click here for details


The 2017 conference features twenty different workshops (four workshop sessions) to choose from! Topics include: Social Media and Communications; Vocational Discernement; Effective Volunteer Recruitment and Retention Strategies; Progam Evaluation and Impact Measurement; Fundraising Strategies; Practicing Healing and Reconciliation; Preparing Volunteers for International Service, and much more! 

To view full workshop descriptions please click HERE.

Exhibitors & Sponsors

If you would like to learn more about becoming a sponsor and/or exhibitor for this event, please review our sponsorship brochure. Questions? Contact Alyssa Sickle at asickle@catholicvolunteernetwork.org

We are thankful to the following sponsors for their support: 


Questions about the National Conference on Faith-Based Service? Contact Sarah Hammel at shammel@catholicvolunteernetwork.org