St. Joseph Worker Program
1884 Randolph Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55105
(651) 690-7049 -
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Program Information


The St. Joseph Worker Program empowers women committed to social change to respond to the needs of the times.


The St. Joseph Worker Program fosters the self-empowerment of women through the values of the leadership, spirituality, social justice, intentional community and living simply, to allow them in the tradition of the Sisters of St. Joseph, to serve where the need is greatest.
Women ages 21-30 are welcome to become St. Joseph Workers. Every volunteer is matched with a placement, where they spend a thirty-six hour work week. One night a week is designated for Sharing of the Heart, in which each household spends an evening with spirituality, listening and learning from one another. In addition, the program includes weekly community nights, multiple retreats, social justice opportunities, and other development activities to make the year a truly transformative experience.


Community   [video]

Forming small intentional communities, St. Joseph Workers focus on living simply and building respectful relationships. Weekly Sharing of the Heart evenings (a Sisters of St. Joseph tradition spanning hundreds of years) allows household members to share and learn from each other. This program informed by a Sharing of the Heart is proven to be highly transformational in terms of personal growth.

Justice  [video]

Justice related work placements (thirty six hours a week) are in the areas of social service, health care, immigration, education and social change and, as the Sisters of St. Joseph have said for nearly 500 years, care for the “Dear Neighbor.” Placements are intended to provide opportunities to serve and learn about direct service and systemic action: the “two feet of justice.”

Spirituality  [video]

Women are encouraged and supported in growing their spiritualty and are invited to experience the spirituality of the Sisters of St. Joseph who focus on love of God and neighbor without distinction. This spirituality extends beyond religious denomination, recognizing that all living beings are recognized as sacred and deserving of our love and respect. Love of God and neighbor without distinction is the foundation that moves the Sisters into social action.

Leadership  [video]

Everyone leads differently. A well rounded experience in leadership benefits career development, activism, community and civic engagement. Through experiences such as trainings, intentional conversations (one-to-ones), mentorship at service sites and unique leadership opportunities, the St. Joseph Worker Program supports women as they strengthen their individual leadership skills. 

Program Specifics


All women, ages 21 to 30, are invited to apply to the St. Joseph Worker Program.
  • Volunteers are matched with a placement site where they serve full-time (36 hours per work week)
  • One night a week is designated for “Sharing of the Heart.” This CSJ tradition provides Workers with an opportunity to develop spirituality, listen and learn from each other.
  • Community nights, retreats, social justice opportunities, and other personal development activities help make the year a truly transformative experience.

St. Joseph Workers receive:

  • Room & Board
  • Health insurance (premiums and some additional funds toward copays and other medical expenses are covered)
  • Transportation to and from placement site
  • Living allowance
  • Spiritual mentor

Additional benefits may include:

  • Graduate or undergraduate course credits through St. Catherine University (some exclusions apply -- please ask)
  • College loan forbearance or deferment
  • Professional networking and mentor possibilities

The St. Joseph Worker Program is an 11-month program (typically August to June) based in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul in Minnesota, U.S.A.

Workers  live in intentional community in dedicated St. Joseph Worker houses with other St. Joseph Workers. Currently, St. Joseph Worker houses are located in the Phillips neighborhood in Minneapolis.

Want to know more?

Explore Leadership, Justice, Community and Spirituality through the stories of SJW Alum in Service with a Twist.

Drs. Karen Westberg
and Susan Cipolle, who completed a review of the St. Joseph Worker Program last year, published an article about the study and its findings in Exemplars, a University of St. Thomas magazine that highlights research done by UST faculty and graduate students. This article, "The Meaningful Life and Work of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet and the St. Joseph Worker Program," has recently been sent out to all faculty and staff via the UST newsroom weekly email. Click the link and read the article!

The St. Joseph Worker Program does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, age, ability, ethnicity or sexual orientation.
St. Joseph Workers © 2014
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