Earlier this year, 650 Catholics with innovative ideas applied to the nationwide OSV (Our Sunday Visitor) Innovation Challenge. Louis Jones, CUP’s Program and Mission Alignment Coordinator, applied and was selected as one of 25 semi-finalists in the contest for his idea of The De Porres Project at Catholic Urban Programs. As a semi-finalist, Louis is now participating in the OSV Challenge Accelerator, a 6-week program aimed at further developing the idea of The De Porres Project through professional development, entrepreneurial education, and spiritual formation.

The vision of the OSV Institute for Catholic Innovation is: “To create an ecosystem for Catholic innovation by forging new paths for people to encounter the truth and beauty of the Catholic Church.” The OSV Institute recognizes the value of pairing ministry and entrepreneurship, and that innovation has the power to bring us together as a Church.

The De Porres Project will be a professional and theological development program aimed at cultivating young adult leadership in Catholic social services. The Project will provide full-time service learning within CUP’s programs, a Catholic social doctrine curriculum, a program development curriculum, and spiritual support for a cohort of young adults every year. The project’s goal is to inspire the next generation of Catholic non-profit leaders in service to the dignity of the human person.

Louis Jones is a Catholic young adult with a passion for the Church’s social doctrine. He will graduate in December with his Master of Social Work degree from Washington University. For Louis, Catholic social doctrine offers a concrete way in which to operationalize his faith in the world. “The principles and themes of the doctrine give me ‘Gospel-colored glasses,’ that help me see social and economic concerns through the lens of Jesus.”

Stay up to date on the De Porres Project and the OSV Innovation Challenge by visiting the program section of catholicurbanprograms.org.