“With this fraternal greeting I write to you in order to present some comments with regard to the Vincentian Family Day of Prayer which will take place on the feast of Saint Vincent de Paul… Thus we propose the following theme for the Day of Prayer on the feast of Saint Vincent de Paul (2011): Harvest the fruits of the Jubilee Year!
Rome, 19 July 2011
To all the members of the Vincentian Family
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
May the grace and peace of Jesus Christ be always with us!
With this fraternal greeting I write to you in order to present some comments with regard to the Vincentian Family Day of Prayer which will take place on the feast of Saint Vincent de Paul.
I realize that in different parts of the world the Vincentian Family engaged in many activities as they celebrated the 350th anniversary of the death of Saint Vincent and Saint Louise. We, the members of the Executive Committee of the Vincentian Family, have decided to take advantage of this important moment in the life of the Vincentian Family and propose that on the feast of Saint Vincent de Paul, September 27, 2011, we pause and reflect on the meaning and significance of the different celebrations and projects that were engaged in during the Jubilee Year (especially those activities undertaken on a local level). In other words, our hope is that we internalize in a positive manner the richness of all the reflections, celebrations and work that was done during the Jubilee Year.
Thus we propose the following theme for the Day of Prayer on the feast of Saint Vincent de Paul (2011): Harvest the fruits of the Jubilee Year! May the different associations share their reflections so that on the feast day these reflections can be shared with others during the celebration of the Eucharist. At the same time the different groups and associations can express in some manner during the Eucharist the commitment that resulted from this shared reflection. The objective here is to celebrate and deepen the meaning of the fruits of the Jubilee Year, discerning the invitation of the Lord’s Spirit to deepen our roots. As we do this we also seek to insure our acceptance and growth in the challenge “Charity-Mission” so that we might better serve people who are poor.
This year we prefer not to send out any formal outline with regard to the celebration of Saint Vincent’s feast. We leave this to the creativity of each National Council and local group of the Vincentian Family. Before the Day of Prayer we invite the different branches to come together and reflect on a local level or to come together and reflect with other members of the Vincentian Family in your area. We then invite you to send your reflections and conclusions to the national leadership team. If the Vincentian Family is organized in this manner in your country, we ask that these National Councils then send a synthesis of these reflections to the office of the Vincentian Family of the General Curia of the Congregation of the Mission in Rome (firstname.lastname@example.org). It is important to send beforehand your reflections on the Jubilee Year so that this might be made known to the International Vincentian Family.
After the Day of Prayer it is also important that you share the actual celebration of the feast day: content, program, videos, the different shared reflections, the creative ways of celebrating the feast, etc.
In this way we can share all of this with the rest of the Vincentian Family through the different means that we have at our disposal, especially the web page of the Vincentian Family. I am convinced that if we share the different ways in which the Lord has spoken to us during the Jubilee Year and share the ways in which we can deepen the fruit of the Jubilee year during the celebrations of Saint Vincent’s feast, then we can become more united and more grounded in our evangelization and service as a family.
Dear sisters and brothers of the Vincentian Family, the Jubilee Year was not some event that began and is now ended. Rather it was an event that had an impact on our lives … an event that gave us new energy to serve Jesus Christ faithfully and creatively today. We extend to you our embrace and our prayers as you prepare to celebrate the feast of Saint Vincent. May we be renewed in our commitment of mission and charity and may we move forward in a creative way as we continue this commitment.
Your brother in Saint Vincent,
G. Gregory Gay, C.M.