Home » Features » Evolving in community: The Loretto Justice Fellowship program is underway

Evolving in community: The Loretto Justice Fellowship program is underway

Posted on February 1, 2024, by Annie Rosenkranz

Two hands hold a bright flame next to the words "Loretto Justice Fellowship"

Like the Loretto Volunteer Program from which it evolved, the Loretto Justice Fellowship program connects the next generation of justice leaders to Loretto, to impactful service work with Loretto-aligned justice organizations and to intentional community. Our new model centers local community impact by responding to the needs of our placement partners and connecting with young leaders from within the communities in which they serve. Together this year, our seven Loretto Justice Fellows will contribute more than 3,300 service hours to six placement-partner organizations in El Paso while connecting with each other and Loretto Community members during monthly community meals, regular retreats and Zoom sessions.

Larissa Meza outside Diocesan Migrant and Refugee Services in El Paso where she is serving this year as she pursues her master’s in social work.
Photo courtesy of Larissa Meza

The work of Loretto Justice Fellows furthers the mission and values of the Loretto Community; enhances the capacity of local social justice organizations in El Paso; and deepens the personal and professional development of Fellows, individually and collectively. And Loretto Justice Fellowship community life invites these young women into relationship with Loretto and invites them to carry forward Loretto ways of being in the world.

Read more about the Loretto Justice Fellowship program, meet the Fellows and learn more about their work for justice and actions for peace here.

At right is a poem penned by Larissa Meza, master of social work student and Loretto Justice Fellow at Diocesan Migrant and Refugee Services (DMRS), sharing her experience just two months into our new program.

Loretto Fellowship Experience

Being part of the Loretto Community
Was something I never imagined.
It started scary …
Not spooky scary …
More of a what am I doing? scary.
Everything started at DMRS,
People are great … smart,
talented and enthusiastic.
Will I be enough?
Months passed … turns out I was.
Community, community here we come!
Everyone deserves a chance, maybe once, maybe twice,
But we all deserve a chance.
Social justice for all!
So far this year has passed and I am rich
In knowledge, in service and in God.
Thank you, Loretto, for having me on your side.
I have learned about you, your values.
I’m still interested in how I can help.
Tell me what time? What place?
I will be there … but wait …
After the semester is over.
If not I will have to make time
To read,
To go to class
And cry a bit.
Then I will be available.
Don’t get me wrong, this experience
Has got me moving, learning
And running.
I will keep running …
Not for money, not for power,
Not for prestige,
For people, Pasoans.


Annie Rosenkranz

Annie is the Director of the Loretto Volunteer Program. She joins the Loretto Volunteer Program after spending the previous 7+ years working in international initiatives and student services at Saint Louis University in St. Louis, MO. Annie's passions lie in travel, all things food, camping, adventure and nature. Her approach to work and life is rooted in solidarity, growing in community, seeking justice and nurturing relationships.
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