Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

When we were baptized, we became children of God through grace, members of his family. And when we were confirmed, we became partners in God’s work of salvation, soldiers equipped to fight evil and spread the Kingdom of Christ. This is our core identity, and so this should be our first priority. This work of building up Christ’s Kingdom is not just for priests, nuns, and full-time missionaries. Every Christian is a full-time missionary! This is why the list of canonized saints doesn’t just contain monks, nuns, bishops, and priests. It also contains kids and carpenters, moms and dads, attorneys and artists.

We are all familiar with the worldwide Catholic charity organization called The Society of St Vincent de Paul. Most of us probably think that this incredible organization was founded by St Vincent de Paul, a tireless French priest who lived in the 1600s. But that is not the case; it was merely named after St Vincent de Paul. The St Vincent de Paul Society was founded in the 1800s by a 20-year-old French college student and seven of his friends. His name was Frederick Ozanam, and he was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 1997. He was a talented young man who earned his doctorate degree in literature at the University of Paris and went on to become a law professor and judge. He was just a normal Christian, a Catholic like any one of us. But he was an authentic Christian who lived his life-mission coherently. That authenticity, that coherence gave birth to the St Vincent de Paul Society, which today, more than 150 years after his death, is still spreading the gospel through its more than 750,000 active members in 142 different countries.

As Christians, this is our primary mission in life: to know, love, and follow Christ, and help others do the same.


Fr. Jason

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