Jubilee House is a Mennonite Voluntary Service Unit hosted by Prairie Street Mennonite Church. MVS Units provide a way for people from different backgrounds to join in community, live simply, and participate in serving the local neighborhood. (You can learn more about VS at the MVS web site.) Prairie Street is always excited to welcome people interested in joining Jubilee House, please explore the opportunities in our community and contact us!
Stories from the community: There are many exciting things
going on in the Elkhart community that Prairie Street has been involved in. We're
eager to have you join these exciting stories and create your own!
Watch this short documentary on the experiences of 4 of the participants of the unit. Learn about who they are, what life in a MVS unit is like and about the faith formation of these young adults who find serving others life-giving.
What else is going on in the community? Read the stories below to find out...
Built in 1921, Historic Roosevelt Elementary School is
just down the block from Prairie Street Mennonite Church. When a new school was
built in 2006, Roosevelt was scheduled for demolition. However, the local community
to save the building and the school now has a bright future hosting a community
center, non-profit organizations and low income housing. Jubilee House members have
worked as community organizers at the center, volunteered at events there, and helped
with community gardens surrounding the building.
Immigration is a hot national topic, but in Elkhart, immigration is an important local issue as well. South central Elkhart is home to a large first-generation Hispanic-American population, which has given Prairie Street the opportunity to host ESL classes and learn about different cultures. MVS workers have held positions locally as immigration counselors with Catholic Charities.
Interested in church leadership? Prairie Street has played a role in the beginnings of organizations like Goshen College, Mennonite Central Committee and Mennonite Mission Network. Today Prairie Street gives you the opportunity to chat with current church leaders or stretch yourself with a church internship. Why not walk over to Benham Ave. and pick out a class at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary?
Working in south central Elkhart gives you the opportunity
to experience and engage with the problems facing large urban communities across
America, but on a smaller scale. Your work will help change the neighborhood and
“I truly experienced the meaning of community while working in Elkhart. It was so good to have people my age to dialogue with, to question reality, to comfort each other, and to struggle about our calling. Basically, that summer was one of the most nurturing summers I've ever had.”
– Sarah [Jubilee House resident]
We love Elkhart, in fact, so much so that we made a whole list of why we love Elkhart. It's 27 pages long (seriously). We think that you'll love Elkhart too, here are some reasons why:
- The only wheelchair recycling and reuse center in 500 miles.
- Thriving community groups like People's History of Elkhart, NAACP Elkhart Chapter and CPT Northern Indiana.
- Sledgehammer-wielding octogenarians.
- Many neighbors with experience in intentional community.
- Five Latino groceries, an Asian market and a Black barbershop within biking distance (and an Amish family that delivers farm-fresh eggs!).
- Restorative justice programs (including the first VORP in the U.S.) that work alongside the criminal justice system to provide alternatives for communities to heal.
Interested in joining Jubilee House? We'd love to tell you more and answer any questions you might have. Just send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org; let us know what types of service you're interested in and we'll get back to you!