September 27th, 2017 – St. Vincent de Paul and Fighting Heresies

At this link is a nice short video about St. Vincent including the quoted text below. You can enjoy the video or just read the text excerpts below, but please take a look at the website:

“St. Vincent de Paul was born to a poor peasant family in the French village of Pouy on April 24, 1581. His first formal education was provided by the Franciscans….

He was ordained in 1600 and remained in Toulose for a time. In 1605, while on a ship traveling from Marseilles to Narbone, he was captured, brought to Tunis and sold as a slave…

St. Vincent went to Avignon and later to Rome to continue his studies. While there he became a chaplain to the Count of Goigny and was placed in charge of distributing money to the deserving poor…

From that point forward he spent his life preaching missions to and providing relief to the poor. He even established hospitals for them…he founded the Ladies of Charity, a lay institute of woman, to help, as well as a religious institute of priests – the Congregation of Priests of the Mission, commonly referred to now as the Vincentians.

This was at a time when there were not many priests in France and what priests there were, were neither well-formed nor faithful to their way of life. Vincent helped reform the clergy and the manner in which they were instructed and prepared for the priesthood…

The Vincentians remain with us today with nearly 4,000 members in 86 countries. In addition to his order of Vincentian priests, St. Vincent cofounded the Daughters of Charity along with St. Louise de Marillac. There are more than 18,000 Daughters today serving the needs of the poor in 94 countries…

Two miracles have been attributed to St Vincent – a nun cured of ulcers and a laywoman cured of paralysis. As a result of the first, Pope Benedict XIII beatified him on August 13, 1729. Less than 8 years later (on June 16, 1737) he was canonized by Pope Clement XIII. The Bull of Canonization recognized Vincent for his charity and reform of the clergy, as well as for his early role in opposing Jansenism.

It has been reported that St. Vincent wrote more than 30,000 letters in his lifetime and that nearly 7,000 had been collected in the 18th century. There are at least five collections of his letters in existence today.”

The article above mentions St. Vincent’s role in fighting Jansenism, a heresy of the sixteen hundreds. This explanation of Jansenism from Wickipedia seems pretty straightforward.

Jansenism is one of a long string of heresies in the history of the Church. In 2011, shortly after being received into the Catholic Church, I did a blog post on heresies.  All of us, well catechized Catholics, will know the answers to all the questions raised in the post which features this timeline of the major heresies. Jansenism is on the right, sixth from the top, just after the various protestant reforms. Click on the blog post link  and then on the chart in the blog post for a high resolution view.

Don’t be concerned about my use of “unexplainable.” It is just intended to be a recognition that we acknowledge the “divine mystery” of our faith.

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