September 18, 2015

1902 FRANCE - Society of Saint Vincent de Paul

Founded in 1833 to help impoverished people living in the slums of Paris, the Society of St Vincent de Paul (SSVP) is an international Catholic voluntary organization dedicated to the sanctification of its members through serving the poor and disadvantaged. The primary figure behind the society's founding was Frédéric Ozanam (1813-1853), a French lawyer, author, and professor in the Sorbonne. He was 20 years old when the society was founded, and was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 1997. The Society took the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Vincent de Paul as its patrons under the influence of Sister Rosalie Rendu, D.C. Sister Rosalie (who was herself beatified in 2003).

The SSVP is part of the Vincentian Family which also includes the Congregation of the Mission (Vincentian priests and brothers, also founded by St. Vincent de Paul), Daughters of Charity, Ladies of Charity (organization of lay women who help the poor, founded by St. Vincent de Paul), Sisters of Charity in the Setonian tradition, and several others, including some religious groups that are part of the Anglican Communion, like the Company of Mission Priests.

The Society numbers about 800,000 members in 140 countries worldwide, whose members operate through "conferences". A conference may be based out of a church, community center, school, hospital, etc., and is composed of volunteers who dedicate their time and resources to help those in need. The core work of the SSVP is the home visit, i.e. the volunteers go to seek people in need, wherever they live: in their homes, on the street, in shelters, in hospital or in prison. In 2012, the Society was accepted as a Non-Governmental Organization at ECOSOC.

About the stamps

The first stamp was issued in 1995, and depicts Évry Cathedral of the Resurrection, a Roman Catholic cathedral in the new town of Évry (Essonne), France, designed by Swiss architect Mario Botta. It was opened in 1995, and was consecrated and dedicated to Saint Corbinian in 1996.

The second stamp was issued also in 1995, to mark the bicentenary of the Institute of Oriental Languages.

Society of Saint Vincent de Paul - Official website
Society of Saint Vincent de Paul - Wikipedia

Sender: Jyvy
Sent from Meylan (Rhône-Alpes / France), on 10.09.2015  

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