More than 900 Vincentians gathered for the Society of St. Vincent de Paul’s (SVDP) Annual National Assembly in August. Executive board members from the St. John’s chapter joined them in this year’s host city of Tampa, FL.
At the National Assembly, attendees were given the opportunity to share in the life-changing experiences the Society of SVDP provides through blending prayer and action, collaborating with humility and simplicity, emphasizing the centrality of Christ, and expressing creative charity. Not only did they gain diverse perspectives from people around the nation through informational workshops, but they were able to hear about how SVDP chapters all over the globe live out the Vincentian mission during an international video conference.
The youth attendees participated in service at the Food Center of St. Vincent de Paul South Pinellas located in downtown St. Petersburg, FL. One way their chapter lives out the Vincentian mission is by providing nutritious meals 365 days a year as they dedicate themselves to feeding the hungry, working poor, and homeless.
St. John’s University’s chapter of St. Vincent de Paul Society lives out the Vincentian mission by participating in prayer, reflection, and education while doing both direct and indirect service for women and men at service sites throughout New York City. They focus on seeing the face of God in those being served, and work in collaboration with the University’s Vincentian Mission Certificate program and the Long Island chapter of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.
“It has been a huge blessing for me to be able to mirror St. Vincent’s acts of standing in solidarity for human dignity of all people with the Society of SVDP in response to the poverty of the world today. As we celebrate the 400th anniversary of the Vincentian charism, I am excited to move forward using everything I’ve learned from the great work done in the past, along with the inspiring experiences I had at the National Assembly,” said Rachel Burgos, a Radiologic Sciences student in the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences who plans to graduate in 2020.
“I am Vincentian! I cannot be prouder to be the President of the Society of SVDP at St. John’s while celebrating the 400th anniversary of the Vincentian charism,” said Matthew Chan, a Business Management major graduating in 2019 from the The Peter J. Tobin College of Business. “I met incredible people from around the country at the National Assembly who share the same amount of love and compassion that I have for the society.