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PRESS RELEASE – September 27th is solemnity of Saint Vincent de Paul, the great feast for the Worldwide Vincentian Family

September, the Vincentian month: that was the manner in which Father Tomaž Mavrič, CM described the month of September in his message that was addressed to all the members of the Vincentian Family on the occasion of the celebration of the solemnity of Saint Vincent de Paul (September 27th). 
The month of September is called the Vincentian month because we, members of the worldwide Vincentian Family, prepare to celebrate together the Feast of Saint Vincent de Paul with beautifully prepared Eucharists, liturgies of the Word, or other prayer encounters, engaging all the branches of the Vincentian Family in a given parish, village, city, region, or country. We also prepare to celebrate the feast with concrete acts of corporal and spiritual charity toward our Lords and Masters.

Those word of gratitude and affirmation of Father Mavriĉ were directed to the members of the more than 160 branches that compose the Vincentian Family. Creativity, which has always characterized Vincentian charity, has not been ast aside, not even during this time of great difficulty and global crisis resulting from the pandemic.

In his message, the Superior General the technological advances that everyone has had to embrace during this time of social “distancing”, but he exhorts us, whenever possible, to meet face to face, to organize more numerous personal meetings, encounters and gatherings. This is most essential as we continue our journey together and proclaim good news to the poor. 

Three main invitations-exhortations: 

  • The greatest challenge for all the branches of the Vincentian Family in the 162 countries in which they are present is that of collaboration. The objective of this collaboration is create more participation and exchanges.
  • Develop on the international, national, regional and local level a system that enables the members to respond quickly and effectively to natural disasters, wars and other catastrophes … and thus to respond not simply as one branch, but to respond as a united Vincentian Family. 
  • To promote the Vincentian Family Homeless Alliance and the 13 Houses Campaign. The Vincentian Family Homeless Alliance, with the 13 Houses Campaign, is a charitable initiative which unites the Vincentian Family and ought to be promoted, introduced and made a reality in all the countries where the Vincentian Family is present so that every Congregation and Association is included. The hope is that we will arrive at a time when the problem of homelessness is not treated individually (not by any one individual or any one branch), but as a Family on a local, national and international level.

These then are the highlights of Father Mavriĉ’s message to the Vincentian Family on the occasions of the feast of Saint Vincent de Paul. There will be many celebrations, including vigils, moments of prayer and eucharistic celebrations in all parts of the world. 

For more information:

Elena Grazini

+39 338 190 24 36 

PRESS RELEASE: On the occasion of the celebration of the feast of Saint Vincent de Paul (September 27th) the Superior General of the Congregation of the Mission published a message in which he shared reflections on the challenges for charitable activity especially during this time of the pandemic that has spread throughout the world.

On the occasion of the celebration of the feast of Saint Vincent de Paul (September 27th) the Superior General of the Congregation of the Mission published a message in which he shared reflections on the challenges for charitable activity especially during this time of the pandemic that has spread throughout the world. 

The pandemic and the Christian response, inspired by the Vincentian charism, are the central themes of the message that Father Tomaẑ Mavriĉ, CM addressed to the members of the worldwide Vincentian Family, present on five continents. Together in prayer, thought and action, Father Mavriĉ highlights several recent events: prayer to Saint Jean Gabriel Perboyre, CM, China’s first canonized saint … prayer for a cure for COVID-19 and prayer to strengthen health care workers, social and religious workers, public authorities and all those who are involved in some way in alleviating the suffering that has been caused by this pandemic. The prayer is entitled, the prayer of the Vincentian Family for the needs of the world … a prayer for those who suffer the terrible consequences of COVID-19, racism and other pandemics that threaten the dignity of the human persons. 

Father also spoke about the response of the Vincentian Family to the tragedy in Lebanon and explained:  This tragic event and so many others around the world – wars, earthquakes, floods, and other calamities – speak clearly of the importance of a model for responding to such urgent needs quickly and in the most organized and effective way possible. We wish to become more and more affective and effective tools in the hands of Jesus to demonstrate His mercy, compassion, and love wherever He wants us to go. To strengthen current practices, the model for the Vincentian Family worldwide is to keep growing in the concrete practice of acting and responding to the call of the poor together as a Family, as a Movement. Every single branch, whether it is big or small, is an invaluable part of the wonderful mosaic that makes up the Vincentian Family. To this we add the members of the Vincentian Family in the larger sense of the word, and together we become a force on which the world’s poor can count.

Another important event that occurred at the beginning of 2020 took place when the international representatives of the 170 branches of the Vincentian Family (the superiors general and international presidents) gathered together in Rome for the first time in order to share, listen to one another, plan, and make decisions with regard to the future. One of the themes of this meeting was the Vincentian Family Homeless Alliance (FHA) and its 13 Houses Campaign. This campaign is a charitable initiative which involves the whole Vincentian Family and therefore, is also to be promoted by all the members of the Family so that the heart of each individual member is moved and becomes an active participant in this common initiative. At the present time there are 53 projects in some stage of development in 37 countries, that is, 761 houses have been built or repaired. It can, therefore, be said that the life of some 5,000 people has been bettered. It should be noted that the campaign was begun in November 2018 with the objective to transform the lives of 10,000 within a period of 3-5 years. In addition to the resultsmentioned above, the following initiatives took place in the last months:

  1. The FHA for Covid-19:18 initiatives in 16 countries. Assistance has been provided to the following: Angola, Bolivia, Ecuador, Ethiopia, the Philippines, Ghana, Lebanon, Guatemala, Madagascar (2), Peru (2), the Dominican Republic, Rwanda, and the Ukraine.
  • Lebanon: from our heart to the heat of Lebanon – emergency response to the August 4th explosion. An on-line call and a general call to raise $100,000.00 in order to assist the Vincentian Family in Beirut and the many families who were left homeless as a result of the explosion.
  • On September 27th, on the YouTube channel of the FHA, there will be a presentation that summarizes the work of the Vincentian Family on behalf of the homeless.

Father Tomaẑ explains: Because the needs of the poor are never-ending, different ones receive priority in each country as the individual branches respond so wonderfully to these needs. However, the Famvin Homeless Alliance is our unique common project. Therefore, it needs to be promoted, extended, and introduced in all 156 countries where the Vincentian Family is present so that no Congregation or Association will remain outside it, but all will take an active part in the initiative in every corner of the world where we live and serve. […] I would like to return to certain points from last year’s letter for the Feast of Saint Vincent de Paul that I am convinced are the key for us to move forward so that the 160 branches pray, think, and act together. This year, we are especially invited as the Vincentian Family, as the Vincentian Movement, to further commit to the FHA because the message of Pope Francis for the 106th World Day of Migrants and Refugees, which providentially will be celebrated 27 September 2020, speaks of one of the groups of persons whom we are helping through the FHA. Therefore, this year’s Feast of Saint Vincent de Paul becomes an extraordinary opportunity to reaffirm or make a commitment to active participation in the FHA as well as in the “13 Houses” project.

Father General invites the members of the 170 branches of the Vincentian Family to become active collaborators in the Famvin Homeless Alliance (website: www.vfhomelessalliance.org – email: homeless@famvin.org) and concludes: The COVID-19 pandemic has brought us as individuals and as members of the worldwide Vincentian Family many opportunities as well as challenges. The same will be true in the post-COVID-19 period. Pope Francis repeatedly reminds us that the world, and we as individuals, cannot remain the same after COVID-19. We will become better, or we will take a step back and become worse. The same is true for our Vincentian Family, for our Vincentian Movement. So many wonderful steps, be they new forms of prayer gatherings, collaborative food distribution, or other initiatives, have already been taken in the pandemic period and will be taken in the so-called post-COVID-19 period, bringing the Family together more and more.

Elena Grazini

Press Office

+39 338 190 24 36 elena@elenagrazini.it

Vincentian Family

press@famvin.org +39 338 190 24 36