Last month I had the privilege of attending the 2019 National Convention of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul (SVDP). The SVDP is a worldwide Christian community founded in Paris in 1833 by a group of Catholic college students, including Blessed Frederick Ozanam. The Society is committed to any form of help that alleviates suffering or deprivation and promotes human dignity and personal integrity. In the last two weeks articles have appeared in the Harvest News documenting the tremendous amount of good our parish chapter of SVDP has done to help those who have come to us in need this past year and thanking you for your generous support. At the convention, I became aware for the first time of the effort the national SVDP puts into advocating for structural change to create a more just society. In other words, in addition to feeding the hungry and helping those in need, they address the causes of hunger and poverty in our society.
This Friday, September 27, is the feast of St. Vincent de Paul. Members of our parish chapter will be attending the 8:00 Mass, and then gathering in the social hall for a breakfast reception. We will view the keynote address given at the convention by Bishop Hying of Madison, Wisconsin, the SVDP national Spiritual Advisor. We encourage you to join us.
We express our gratitude to the St. Isidore Vincentions who give a great amount of time and effort in performing the very heart of our mission as a Catholic community.
Next weekend we will be initiating a new form of hospitality after our Sunday liturgies. Instead of “Coffee and Donuts” in the parish hall, we will be offering simple refreshments in the Gathering Space. The hope is to create greater fellowship by “roaming” and “mixing” with others, rather than just sitting at a table with those we already know. It is also intended to be more welcoming to our visitors. The current plan is to offer this hospitality approximately twice a month. Stay tuned!