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The son of peasants and pig keepers in southern France, St. Vincent de Paul was ordained unusually young, at age 20. He was a friend of St. Francis de Sales, who influenced him greatly. Direct service to the poor at the parish level was M. Vincent’s vision, beginning with organizations of wealthy women who knew local needs.

Later, with St. Louise de Marillac, he founded the Daughters of Charity, who worked with orphans, slaves, prisoners, the sick, and the destitute. Meanwhile, his personal holiness and preaching attracted priests whom he established as the Congregation of the Mission (Vincentians). He trained them to preach practical sermons to country people, to renounce ecclesiastical privilege, and to educate seminarians.

Two hundred years after his death, the layman Blessed Frederick Ozanam extended M. Vincent’s vision and organized parish-level St. Vincent de Paul Societies to administer local charitable works.

Saint Vincent de Paul’s feast day is on September 27th. He is the patron saint of charities, horses, hospitals, leprosy, Madagascar, spiritual help, Saint Vincent de Paul societies, Vincentian Service Corps, and volunteers. As seen depicted with a little girl, St. Vincent co-founded the Daughters of Charity, who serve the poor in less fortunate countries around the world. His face is old and weathered; however, he is smiling and serene.



Plaster and horse hair statue. Polychrome.

Made by the Daprato Company, circa 1930’s.

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