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Saint Vincent De Paul

Item Number: 110

Catalog Code: 9780895556219

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Vincent De Paul

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F. A. Forbes

"I ask of you only one word," said Vincent to the Ladies of Charity. "Will you go on with the work or no?"

Ten years before, the Ladies of Charity had begun taking in babies left homeless and helpless in the streets of Paris. They had started out with twelve little ones. A decade later, 4,000 children-mostly still unbaptized-had been christened, adopted and cared for, and the numbers were still increasing.

But now finances were stretched to the breaking point. The Thirty Years War was raging, there were many other needs, and it seemed impossible to care for the children any longer. However, knowing that their eternal destiny as well as their temporal welfare was at stake, Vincent's heart was about to break at the thought of abandoning these children. He stood pleading before the Ladies of Charity.

Such was the great Apostle of Charity, St. Vincent de Paul. His remarkable life would begin in a peasant's cottage and would involve being captured and enslaved in northern Africa, escaping back to France, having clashes with the Jansenist heretics, rescuing countless foundling children, having political adven-tures at court, and giving birth to two great religious orders-the Vincentians and the Sisters of Charity.

This is the story of the great Saint who put charity onto an organized basis and thus transformed not only Paris but the history of the Catholic Church.

Imprimatur: Edmund Canon Surmont, Vicar General of Westminster, 7/2/1919

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St. Vincent de Paul

St. Vincent de Paul Feast Day:
Roman Rite Calendar - 09/27
Tridentine Calendar - 09/27

Patron Of: Charitable Societies, Charity, Hospital Workers, Lepers, Prisoners, Spiritual Help, Hospitals, Horses, Volunteers

    Born to a peasant family. A highly intelligent youth, Vincent spent four years with the Franciscan friars at Acqs getting an education. Tutor to children of a gentlemen in Acqs. He began divinity studies in 1596 at the University of Toulouse. Ordained at age 20.

    Taken captive by Turkish pirates to Tunis, and sold into slavery. Freed in 1607 when he converted one of his owners to Christianity.

    Returning to France, he served as parish priest near Paris where he started organizations to help the poor, nursed the sick, found jobs for the unemployed, etc. Chaplain at the court of Henry IV of France. With Louise de Marillac, founded the Congregation of the Daughters of Charity. Instituted the Congregation of Priests of the Mission (Lazarists). Worked always for the poor, the enslaved, the abandoned, the ignored, the pariahs.


    1581 near Ranquine, Gascony near Dax, southwest France; the town is now known as Saint-Vincent-de-Paul, Landes, France

    1660 at Paris, France; body incorrupt

    21 August 1729 by Pope Benedict XIII

    16 June 1737 by Pope Clement XII

All information used with permission of the Patron Saint Index.

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