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February 5 2016

2016 : Jubilee Year of Mercy

For Catholics all around the world, 2016 is going to be especially intense, after the Holy Father’s announcement on 13 March of an Extraordinary Holy Year, to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the closure of the Second Vatican Council, a great Jubilee of Mercy, a theme dear to the heart of Pope Francis.  He hopes for “spiritual renewal of the whole Church”. Preparation for this event has been entrusted to the Pontifical Council for the new evangelization.

The Holy Year was officially announced in the publication of the Papal Bull of Indiction Misericordiae vultus on 11 April 2015, the eve of Divine Mercy Sunday. In this document, Pope Francis explains the reason for this “Holy Year” and its highlights, planned for Rome but also for all dioceses, who will be visited by “mercy missionaries”. He invites Christians to contemplate and live this mystery of mercy,  “a source of joy, serenity and peace.”

On 29 November 2015, during his African tour, Pope Francis marked the first high spot of this year by opening the first of the Holy Doors at the Cathedral of Bangui, a few days before the Jubilee year begins, thus making this Central African capital, a city ravaged by war, and one of the poorest on the planet, the “spiritual capital of the world”.

The Holy Year and Jubilee begins officially on 8 December, Feast of the Immaculate Conception, when the Holy Door of Saint Peter’s Basilica is opened. This door will be closed again on 20 November 2016, solemnity of Christ, King of the Universe, marking the end of the jubilee year.  Between these two dates, a whole series of events is planned in Rome and in the dioceses.


In a letter addressed to the International President General, the Pontifical Council Cor unum has called on the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul to promote a day of spiritual retreat on the theme of “Caritas Christi urget nos” (The Charity of Christ Crucified urges us), for all those who contribute to the Church’s charitable action, as professionals or as volunteers. Mgr. Giampietro Dal Toso – Secretary, states in the letter: “Faithful to the wishes of the Holy Father, it will be an encouragement to us to apply especially to our daily lives this dimension of compassion, by exploring more deeply the roots of our charitable action”.

This day will be held during Lent 2016, and each entity (whether local, regional or national) of the Confederation is free to choose a date that suits them.  Cor Unum will provide topics for reflection on its website after Christmas, with tools for organising this event.

February 3 2016

New aggregation application form

Council General International emitted a new aggregation application form. This new form is now available on our Web site. Follow this link: Agregation Form 

February 1 2016

Spiritual Reflection for February - The Light

A new spiritual reflection is available in the "Spirituality" section:

Jesus says “I am the Light” and He calls us to be that light here on earth and to see His light in those we meet.  As Vincentians, indeed as Christians, we know that there are times when we fail both to see the light or to be that light.

To read more, please click on this link: Spiritual-Reflection


January 22 2016

Changing Times - Social Justice Newsletter

The first Changing Times - Social Justice Newsletter is now available.  Please click on the link to read the document:  Volume 1, Issue 1 January 2016

You can join our mailing list by submitting your name, email, home conference and location to

January 21 2016

A book celebrating the Society’s 170th Anniversary

Members are invited to take part in a a survey

Last November, the members of board of the National Council adopted a project to mark the 170th anniversary of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul of Canada: a book documenting Vincentian history on Canadian soil since the foundation in 1846, while at the same time evoking more contemporary aspects of today’s Society.

The book is meant to be an overall promotion tool while assisting in the recruitment of new members. It is also a walk down memory lane and you can contribute to it! 

We have prepared a survey designed to gather as much data as possible at grassroots level. A questionnaire intended for ALL members of the Society is available on line at:


The full questionnaire is also available in pdf format, for additional information and for those who would like to print it and return it by regular mail, fax or e-mail (scanned document). PDF DOCUMENT

The initiative is intended for each member to answer directly to the national council on an individual basis - there is no need to go through your conference or council in order to return the questionnaire.

Since every region has been asked to distribute the survey among its members, you might receive other messages in this regard. However, you may already reply on line if as of today.

Whether you choose to return the survey by post, fax, email or answer on line, all questionnaires must be returned by February 22, 2016.

The survey’s results will guide the editors, who are working on that document, a first time since the creation of the Society in Canada, in November 1846. Those of you who have photos and stories to tell are also invited to write to

Your opinion is important. THANK YOU in advance for your valuable participation. 

January 12 2016

North of 60 Project - 2015 Report

Thanks to the generous support from Corporations and members of the Catholic Community in Edmonton, the SSVP North of 60 Project supplied food, household products and other items of necessity to those who have less living in Canadian Arctic Communities.  This year, eight sea cans were shipped, supporting nine communities.

The program has grown in momentum and improved with more control in sorting and distribution of donated items.  We are getting better.

The program has also expanded north east as members of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul in the Eastern Canadian Regions initiate similar programs to support Arctic Communities across the Canadian North.

As we begin the planning for next year, we have increased the support from both Catholic and non-Catholic Parishes, as well as Corporations providing the needed transportation logistics that are necessary to continue.  The target for 2016 for this SSVP Western Region program will grow to nine sea cans supporting 10 Communities.

Thanks to all who made this happen.  Peter Ouellette

We invite you to read the complete report, please click on this link:

January 11 2016

Spiritual Reflection for January

A new spiritual reflection is available in the "Spirituality" section:

…. Peter said (to the person asking for alms who has been lame from birth) “I have no silver and gold, but I give you what I have, in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk”. And he took him by the right hand and raised him up; and immediately his feet and ankles were made strong. And leaping up he stood and walked and entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God. And all the people saw him walking and praising God, and recognized him as the one who sat for alms at the Beautiful Gate of the temple; and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what has happened to him – Acts 3. 

To read more, please click on this link: January-Spiritual-Reflection



January 4 2016

Social Justice

A new PDF document "Ten Foundational Principles in the Social Teaching of the Church"  was added to the "Social Justice" section.  To read the document, please click on this link: Ten Foundational Principles in the Social Teaching of the Church

December 29 2015

Council General International's Newsletter - December 2015

We invite you to read Council General International's newsletter.

To read the document please click: NEWSLETTER CGI 12-2015 

December 23 2015

Merry Christmas