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10th Biennial Vincentian Chair of Social Justice Conference

A Focus on the Common Good: Homelessness and the Need for Systemic Change

October 21, 2017
8:30 am – 2:00 pm
D'Angelo Center, Room 416
Open to Public
Registration Required

Online registration has closed. To register, please contact the Vincentian Center for Church and Society at 718-990-1612 or [email protected] until 4 p.m. on Thursday, October 19. Walk-in registration will be available on Saturday, October 21.

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This year’s conference—entitled “A Focus on the Common Good: Homelessness and the Need for Systemic Change”— addresses the need to welcome the stranger and serve the most marginalized in our country and communities. 

The conference is FREE of charge and complimentary coffee, tea and a light lunch will be provided.

In addition to St. John’s faculty, personnel and students, the conference welcomes participation from external partners such as religious leaders, service-providers, community organizers, and faculty from other institutions. The experts and participants will develop action plans for individuals and communities to effectively address homelessness at the local and national levels.

Conference Goals

  1. Provide an interdisciplinary examination of homelessness, including perspectives from the disciplines of theology, economics, health, mental health, law and the social sciences.
  2. Identify concrete actions for individuals, communities, states and national actors to address homelessness. 
  3. Identify strategies that aim to integrate Catholic Social Thought and the preferential option for the poor into discourse and policy decision-making.        

Each of these goals reflects the Catholic and Vincentian character of St. John’s University in the service of its Mission.


Keynote Speakers

Lee Stringer
Grand Central Winter:
Stories from the Street

Rosanne Haggerty
President and CEO
Community Solutions

Jim White
Executive Director
Covenant House New Jersey

“Foxes have dens and birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head.”
—Matthew 8:20

The Vincentian Center for Church and Society extends a special thanks to:

  • The members of the Vincentian Faculty Research Fellows who served on the Planning Committee and gave direction to this Conference.
  • Professor William (Alex) Morel who included a special project on “Homelessness" in his Photography and Social Justice Class. The results of this effort will be seen at the conference.
  • Professor Meghan Clark and her Catholic social teaching classes for their posters on Homelessness & Human Dignity in 20 cities.  The results of this assignment will also be evident at the conference.

Free Parking on Campus

Free parking on campus situated closest to the D’Angelo Center is: in the rear of Sullivan Hall. Enter through Gate #6 on Goethals Avenue and 170 street. There will be a Public Safety Officer available to direct you. For directions to the campus by car or public transportation click here.

Hotel for Out of Town Guests

Interested in staying at a hotel? Please click here for information about hotels in the nearby area.

Volunteer Opportunities

  • The Midnight Run program is one of the most popular services among the    members of St. John’s University.  Students provide meals, toiletries, and clothing to the homeless in Manhattan. Register at:
  • St. John’s Bread and Life: “Fridays in the Soup Kitchen” offers students and   employees a remarkable opportunity to enhance the lives of underserved New Yorkers while enriching their own through Vincentian Service. Register at:
  • Bowery Mission: In addition to providing the immediate needs of food, shelter and clothing, the Mission also offers recovery programs and a free medical clinic. 227 Bowery between Rivington and Stanton Sts (212-674-3456, Call 800-871-6347 to volunteer.
  • Coalition for the Homeless: Each night they serve meals to the homeless, provide job-training for  those in need, and have a crisis-intervention center for at-risk families. Email [email protected] to volunteer.

For more information, contact:

The Vincentian Center for Church and Society at 718-990-1612 or [email protected].

Click to donate to DePaul Kharkiv, an International Service Provider for Homelessness.