This is the fifth of a series of formation packages meant for individual or group study based upon “The Prophetic Dimension of the Vincentian Charism in light of the Social Doctrine of the Church” by Sr. María Pilar López.
How many times have your heard or commented about the burden of administration? In our article Sr. Pilar images a dramatic twist on administration. Have you ever thought there might be a mystical dimension in a sense that one can find God in administration?
I was originally going to draw attention to another aspect of this section on material goods. What some have called the “forgotten truth” that Pope Francis reminded us about in Laudato Si. I refer to his highlighting the “universal destination of material goods.”
As another author observed, the universal destination of material goods is extremely relevant today. This is especially so in societies like the United States and Western Europe, where we defend the right to private property almost always without question.
Then I thought I would focus on her following thought.
“Two centuries before public assistance and three centuries before social security, Saint Vincent put in place a number of works and services for the poor — services that were totally free of charge. Therefore Vincent had to find resources in order to continue these works and services.”
Finding the resources for social security and safety nets; these are certainly ongoing problems for today and problems Vincent addressed centuries ago.
As I read and reread the section I fixed on these words:
“The administration of material goods takes on a mystical dimension which Vincent understood as meaning “a life united with God,” that is, having the same will and non-will as God” (CCD:XI:286).
“Vincent not only found God in the poor but also in the administration of goods, in the ingenuity and creativity that was needed in order to assist such a large number of poor people: abandoned children, orphans, infirm, peasants living in misery, refugees, etc.”
“Administrators who fulfill their mission and have been purified by detachment and the Vincentian spirit, become an image of God, Creator and Provider.”
Eureka! Becoming an image of God, Creator and Provider! What an insight into the ministries of fund-raising and administration!
- Can I re-frame my sense of administration as a burden getting in the way of real ministry?
- Can I see myself as finding God in administration?
See you next week!
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