Tag Archives: St Vincent de Paul

St Vincent de Paul –light for the poor

Portrait de saint Vincent de Paul
Toile de l’Žglise paroissiale de CLICHY

“If you consider the poor in the light of faith, then you will observe that they are taking the place of the Son of God who chose to be poor.
. . .
“Since Christ willed to be born poor, he chose for himself disciples who were poor. He made himself the servant of the poor and shared their poverty. He went so far as to say that he would consider every deed which either helps or harms the poor as done for or against himself. Since God surely loves the poor, he also loves those who love the poor. For when one person holds another dear, he also includes in his affection anyone who loves or serves the one he loves. That is why we hope that God will love us for the sake of the poor.
. . . .
“It is our duty to prefer the service of the poor to everything else and to offer such service as quickly as possible. If a needy person requires medicine or other help during prayer time, do whatever has to be done with peace of mind. Offer the deed to God as your prayer. Do not become upset or feel guilty because you interrupted your prayer to serve the poor. God is not neglected if you leave him for such service. One of God’s works is merely interrupted so that another can be carried out. So when you leave prayer to serve some poor person, remember that this very service is performed for God. Charity is certainly greater than any rule.”

– Saint Vincent de Paul

St Vincent de Paul

St Vincent de Paul gave the mission he was given by God: “to preach the Gospel to the poor.”

When sending forth his first missionaries, St. Vincent de Paul said “our vocation is to go, not just to one parish, not just to one diocese, but to all over the world, and to do what?  To set people’s hearts on fire, to do what the Son of God did.  He came to set the world on fire in order to inflame it with his love.”

The spiritual sons and daughters of Vincent … “set America “on fire” with Christ ‘s love; and the flame is still burning, burning for for the poor and abandoned; burning for those in formation for priestly ministry; burning for those in countless churches longing to hear God’s Word; burning in their confessionals, for those aching for God’s mercy; burning for those in schools and universities seeking knowledge and wisdom; burning in hospitals and prisons; burning for and with the Daughters of Charity and the wider Vincentian family; burning at home and in mission lands; burning for justice and peace and inclusion and wholeness and Christ’s love.”

Bishop David O’Connell, CM
excerpts of a homily, 24 September 2016

St Vincent de Paul

Vincent de Paul, Spanish icon

Today is the liturgical memorial of Saint Vincent de Paul and the 400th anniversary of the Congregation of the Mission (the Vincentians). My prayer today is focussed on the Vincentian gift I received as a school boy at St. Stanislaus Church, New Haven, CT.  Thanks be to God for Vincent and his Family!

In his letter to the Vincentian Family today, the Holy Father wrote:

He was always progressing, open to seeking God and himself. Grace worked to supplement this constant quest: as a shepherd, he encountered Jesus the Good Shepherd in a striking way in the person of the poor. This occurred in a very special way when he allowed himself to be touched by the eyes of a man thirsting for mercy and by the situation of family lacking everything. At that moment, he was deeply moved by Jesus looking at him, inviting him to no longer live for himself, but to serve Jesus wholeheartedly in persons who are poor, whom Vincent de Paul would later call “our lords and masters” (Correspondence, Conferences, Documents XI, 349). His life then became steadfast service, up to his last breath. A verse from Scripture showed him the meaning of his mission: “The Lord has sent me to bring the Good News to the poor” (cf. Lk 4:18).

In the glorious wounds of Jesus, may you find the strength of charity, the happiness of the grain that gives life by dying, the fecundity of the rock from which water gushes forth, the joy of coming out of yourself in order to go out into the world, free from nostalgia for the past, confident in God and creative regarding the challenges of today and tomorrow because, as Saint Vincent said, “love is inventive to infinity”.

St Vincent de Paul

st-vicent-de-paul

 

“The Church teaches us that mercy belongs to God. Let us implore Him to bestow on us the spirit of mercy and compassion, so that we are filled with it and may never lose it. Only consider how much we ourselves are in need of mercy.”

Saint Vincent de Paul

Vincentians elect new superior general: Father Tomaz Mavric

Tomaz MavricThe Congregation of the Mission –the Vincentians– elected a new Superior General on Tuesday, 5 July 2016, succeeding Saint Vincent de Paul and most recently Father Gregory G. Gay who was elected Superior General of the Congregation of the Mission in 2004.

The Vincentians began their 42nd General Assembly at DePaul University in Chicago, the first General Assembly outside of Europe. You will know, among many others, Saints Vincent de Paul, Louise de Marillac, Elizabeth Seton and Blessed  Frederic Ozanam who form the Vincentian family.

Father Tomaz Mavric, 57, is the Twenty-fifth Superior General of the Congregation of the Mission and the Company of the Daughters of Charity.

A biography of Father Tomaz Mavric is posted here.

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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