News

Founder of Homeboy Industries, Rev. Gregory Boyle, S.J. Speaks at Saint Peter’s

Jersey City, N.J. – Rev. Gregory Boyle, S.J., the founder of the gang-intervention program, Homeboy Industries, will speak at Saint Peter’s College on Monday, March 29, 2010, at 11:00 a.m. on the College Jersey City campus in McIntyre Lounge. Fr. Boyle’s lecture is part of Saint Peter’s first Ignatian Heritage Week, a weeklong celebration honoring the College’s Jesuit heritage and tradition, and its historic presence around the world.

Located in downtown Los Angeles, Homeboy Industries is recognized as the largest gang intervention program in the country. Fr. Boyle is a nationally recognized figure for his innovative intervention approaches to helping gang members retreat from their former lifestyle. An author, his most recent book and memoir, Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion has been critically acclaimed by the Los Angeles Times.

He has received several recognitions on behalf of Homeboy Industries and for his work with former gang members, including the California Peace Prize. In 2007, Fr. Boyle received the “Humanitarian of the Year” Award from Bon Appétit magazine and the Caring Institute’s 2007 Most Caring People Award.

In 2005, Fr. Boyle and several former gang members were selected by Mrs. George Bush to be featured speakers at the White House Conference on Youth. Additionally, Fr. Boyle serves as a consultant to youth service and governmental agencies, policy makers and employers.

Fr. Boyle will discuss the topic, “Tattoos on the Heart: Strategies for Working with At-Risk Youth,” which focuses on the strategies he has developed to help at-risk youth, including Jobs for a Future, an employment referral center. He will also explain how his work with Homeboy Industries provides love and support for individuals who joined gangs seeking a surrogate family because their homes were emotionally impoverished or destructive.

Taking place from Tuesday, March 23, 2010, to Tuesday, March 30, 2010, Ignatian Heritage Week is a collaboration of performances, lectures and presentations that address the identity and principles surrounding Ignatian spirituality. Sponsored by the College’s Jesuit honor society, Alpha Sigma Nu, this event is open to the public, and admission is free.

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Saint Peter’s College, founded in 1872, is a Jesuit, Catholic college in the liberal arts tradition located in the heart of Jersey City, N.J., with a branch campus in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., and course offerings on the Jersey City Waterfront and at various corporate sites throughout New Jersey. Educating over 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students in more than 50 programs, Saint Peter’s College is committed to academic excellence and individual attention, preparing students for a lifetime of learning, leadership and service in a diverse and global society.