Rev. Gregory Boyle, S.J., was ordained a priest in 1984 and shortly afterward became the pastor of Dolores Mission parish, serving from 1986-1992. While at Dolores Mission, he developed numerous programs for at-risk youth in the community. In 2001 his various projects assisting youths in gangs were united under one banner: Homeboy Industries. Through Homeboy, Fr. Greg has provided job training and work experience, mental health counseling, tattoo removal, and education, including Opportunities for Learning Charter High School, all in an environment where once-rival gang members are able to work side by side. In his talk to the Catholic Higher Education Collaborative conference (CHEC) attendees at Loyola Marymount University (LMU), Fr. Greg challenged educators to reach out to youth at the margins. Rather than being in service to, he called on his audience to be in solidarity with those who are most at-risk. His story is an example of what can be accomplished through unconditional love for troubled youth. What follows is the text of Fr. Greg’s talk to CHEC at LMU in January 2009.

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