Society of St. Vincent de Paul
Friday, February 12, 2016

February 21, 2016
Gospel:  (Luke 9: 28-36)
Jesus took Peter, John and James and went up the mountain to pray.  While he was praying his face changed in appearance and his clothing became dazzling white....Peter and his companions had been overcome by sleep, but becoming fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him.  Peter said to Jesus, "Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three tents, one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah." But he did not know what he was saying.  While he was speaking, a cloud came and cast a shadow over them...Then from the cloud came a voice that said, "This is my chosen Son, listen to him." After the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone.
The only way for us to "remain" in Jesus' glory is to accept the baptismal challenge to recognize Jesus as the beloved Son and to "Listen to him." This means that we take to heart gospel living.  This Sunday we are given a glimpse of glory to help us on our journey of a lifetime of self-emptying.  This tells us something about how we might keep Sundays.  If each Sunday is a day of rest, a time to be good to ourselves, to do something special that is uplifting, to enter into a moment of glory by praying, we would be better fortified to continue our journey.  (Living Liturgy, p.74)
Vincentian Meditation:
Though God is utterly transcendent, do we not experience the self-communication of God at times? Looking back at times, do we not perceive that we have been transformed by events that were beyond our control, often by our contact with the poor, by their faith, their gratitude, their persistent trust in God's presence and providence? Are there not "angels" who enter our lives and touch us deeply because of their authentic witness to the gospels, because of their persevering hope in the face of sickness, suffering and death?  Are there not occasions when we are deeply touched by the loyalty of friends, by their faithful love? Are these not ways in which we glimpse God's freely-bestowed presence in our own human experience?  I suggest this Lent that we focus on growing in awareness of God's self-gift, in its many expressions, and raise our hearts and voices to the Lord in gratitude. (Maloney, Go! On the Missionary Spirituality of St. Vincent de Paul, p. 99)
Discussion: (Share your thoughts after a moment of silence)
            How have you experienced God touching your life?
Closing Prayer:

Christ appeared in the splendor of a vision to his disciples,    
-may we find the face of Jesus in ordinary events of our life.
 For all Vincentians who dedicate themselves to the service,
-may their love and justice transfigure the lives of the poor.
 We bring all of our petitions before God,
-may God's face shine upon us. Amen           
Souper Bowl of Caring

Antonian College Prepatory High School held their 5th Annual Souper Bowl of Caring in which the Society of St. Vincent de Paul was the sole recipient once again!  The Football team collected over 9,000 pounds of food, which we are incredibly grateful for.    
Thank you so much Antonian! 

*If your Conference can host one of the training sessions and for ALL RSVP's, please contact either Mary Esther Jockers at or B.J. Polk at  


Classes will be CANCELLED
if no one hosts or RSVPs for the classes.

  rummage sale
SVDP St. Dominic's Conference is preparing for its semi-annual Rummage Sale on the church's grounds, slated for SATURDAY , MARCH 05, 2016, 09:00 - 03:00 p.m.
Spaces will be made available for $15 each.  Please call Mario Hernandez at (210)
748-2540 to reserve a space(s).
 Variety of booths will be available. All are welcome to come and enjoy a day of shopping or selling!
SVDP St. Dominic's Conference hours of operation are
Tuesday & Fridays, 09:00 a.m.-12 noon.  

Please note that all proceeds go to support the SVDP Conference at St. Dominic's! 
 St. Ann's Conference is need of toiletries products to give out to their Brothers and Sisters in need. 
They are currently given out once a week, but the their homeless population is growing rapidly.  
Currently,  they arr buying deodorant (men and women) body soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, mouthwash, shavers, combs, washrags.   They also buy large boxes of detergent, which is put into smaller bagged portions, so Brothers and Sisters can wash their clothes.
If any Conference has extra toiletries that they can provide to St. Ann's, please call the Conference at 734 5404 and leave message, and the St. Ann Vincentians can pick up the items.
Thank you all very much! 

Printer Available at St. Anthony Mary Claret

We, at St Anthony Mary Claret Conference, have upgraded to Windows 10 and had to replace our office printer.  We have a nice Cannon PIXMA MX330 series all-in-one printer, copier, fax, and scan machine that is in great shape. We also have two black ink cartridges to go with it. It works with Windows 7 and 8.1. If Interested, contact me, Harold Shields at 210 688-0070 (leave a message) or email . It was bought with SVdP money so it's available at no charge to any conference or council that has use for it.

Mr. Jesse Camacho, President of our St. Timothy Conference, has received the honor of The Lumen Gentium Award.

Diana Marmolejo served as St. Vincent de Paul President of the St. Helena Conference for six years, has also been honored.
Diana is a Eucharistic Minister and serves as a minister to the sick.

The Lumen Gentium Award was initiated by Archbishop Gustavo to honor deserving lay people who are deeply devoted to and actively engaged in their parishes. 


Friday, February 12- St. Apollonia

The persecution of Christians began in Alexandria during the reign of the Emperor Philip. The first victim of the pagan mob was an old man named Metrius, who was tortured and then stoned to death. The second person who refused to worship their false idols was a Christian woman named Quinta. Her words infuriated the mob and she was scourged and stoned.

While most of the Christians were fleeing the city, abandoning all their worldly possessions, an old deaconess, Apollonia, was seized. The crowds beat her, knocking out all of her teeth. Then they lit a large fire and threatened to throw her in it if she did not curse her God. She begged them to wait a moment, acting as if she was considering their requests. Instead, she jumped willingly into the flames and so suffered martyrdom.

There were many churches and altars dedicated to her. Apollonia is the patroness of dentists, and people suffering from toothache and other dental diseases often ask her intercession. She is pictured with a pair of pincers holding a tooth or with a golden tooth suspended from her necklace. St. Augustine explained her voluntary martyrdom as a special inspiration of the Holy Spirit, since no one is allowed to cause his or her own death.

Saturday, February 13 - St. Giles Mary of St. Joseph

In the same year that a power-hungry Napoleon Bonaparte led his army into Russia, Giles Mary of St. Joseph ended a life of humble service to his Franciscan community and to the citizens of Naples.

Francesco was born in Taranto to very poor parents. His father's death left the 18-year-old Francesco to care for the family. Having secured their future, he entered the Friars Minor at Galatone in 1754. For 53 years he served at St. Paschal's Hospice in Naples in various roles, such as cook, porter or most often as official beggar for that community.

"Love God, love God" was his characteristic phrase as he gathered food for the friars and shared some of his bounty with the poor-all the while consoling the troubled and urging everyone to repent. The charity which he reflected on the streets of Naples was born in prayer and nurtured in the common life of the friars. The people whom Giles met on his begging rounds nicknamed him the "Consoler of Naples." He was canonized in 1996.

Sunday, February 14- Sts. Cyril and Methodius

Because their father was an officer in a part of Greece inhabited by many Slavs, these two Greek brothers ultimately became missionaries, teachers and patrons of the Slavic peoples.

After a brilliant course of studies, Cyril (called Constantine until he became a monk shortly before his death) refused the governorship of a district such as his brother had accepted among the Slavic-speaking population. Cyril withdrew to a monastery where his brother Methodius had become a monk after some years in a governmental post.

A decisive change in their lives occurred when the Duke of Moravia (present-day Czech Republic) asked the Eastern Emperor Michael for political independence from German rule and ecclesiastical autonomy (having their own clergy and liturgy). Cyril and Methodius undertook the missionary task.

Cyril's first work was to invent an alphabet, still used in some Eastern liturgies. His followers probably formed the Cyrillic alphabet (for example, modern Russian) from Greek capital letters. Together they translated the Gospels, the psalter, Paul's letters and the liturgical books into Slavonic, and composed a Slavonic liturgy, highly irregular then.

That and their free use of the vernacular in preaching led to opposition from the German clergy. The bishop refused to consecrate Slavic bishops and priests, and Cyril was forced to appeal to Rome. On the visit to Rome, he and Methodius had the joy of seeing their new liturgy approved by Pope Adrian II. Cyril, long an invalid, died in Rome 50 days after taking the monastic habit.

Methodius continued mission work for 16 more years. He was papal legate for all the Slavic peoples, consecrated a bishop and then given an ancient see (now in the Czech Republic). When much of their former territory was removed from their jurisdiction, the Bavarian bishops retaliated with a violent storm of accusation against Methodius. As a result, Emperor Louis the German exiled Methodius for three years. Pope John VIII secured his release.

Because the Frankish clergy, still smarting, continued their accusations, Methodius had to go to Rome to defend himself against charges of heresy and uphold his use of the Slavonic liturgy. He was again vindicated.

Legend has it that in a feverish period of activity, Methodius translated the whole Bible into Slavonic in eight months. He died on Tuesday of Holy Week, surrounded by his disciples, in his cathedral church.
Opposition continued after his death, and the work of the brothers in Moravia was brought to an end and their disciples scattered. But the expulsions had the beneficial effect of spreading the spiritual, liturgical and cultural work of the brothers to Bulgaria, Bohemia and southern Poland. Patrons of Moravia, and specially venerated by Catholic Czechs, Slovaks, Croatians, Orthodox Serbians and Bulgarians, Cyril and Methodius are eminently fitted to guard the long-desired unity of East and West. In 1980, Pope John Paul II named them additional co-patrons of Europe (with Benedict).

Monday, February 15- St. Claude de la Colombière

This is a special day for the Jesuits, who claim today's saint as one of their own. It's also a special day for people who have a special devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus-a devotion Claude de la Colombière promoted, along with his friend and spiritual companion, St. Margaret Mary Alacoque. The emphasis on God's love for all was an antidote to the rigorous moralism of the Jansenists, who were popular at the time.

Claude showed remarkable preaching skills long before his ordination in 1675. Two months later he was made superior of a small Jesuit residence in Burgundy. It was there he first encountered Margaret Mary Alacoque. For many years after he served as her confessor.

He was next sent to England to serve as confessor to the Duchess of York. He preached by both words and by the example of his holy life, converting a number of Protestants. Tensions arose against Catholics and Claude, rumored to be part of a plot against the king, was imprisoned. He was ultimately banished, but by then his health had been ruined.

He died in 1682. Pope John Paul II canonized Claude de la Colombière in 1992.

Tuesday, February 16 - St. Gilbert of Sempringham

Gilbert was born in Sempringham, England, into a wealthy family, but he followed a path quite different from that expected of him as the son of a Norman knight. Sent to France for his higher education, he decided to pursue seminary studies.

He returned to England not yet ordained a priest, and inherited several estates from his father. But Gilbert avoided the easy life he could have led under the circumstances. Instead he lived a simple life at a parish, sharing as much as possible with the poor. Following his ordination to the priesthood he served as parish priest at Sempringham.

Among the congregation were seven young women who had expressed to him their desire to live in religious life. In response, Gilbert had a house built for them adjacent to the Church. There they lived an austere life, but one which attracted ever more numbers; eventually lay sisters and lay brothers were added to work the land. The religious order formed eventually became known as the Gilbertines, though Gilbert had hoped the Cistercians or some other existing order would take on the responsibility of establishing a rule of life for the new order. The Gilbertines, the only religious order of English origin founded during the Middle Ages, continued to thrive. But the order came to an end when King Henry VIII suppressed all Catholic monasteries.

Over the years a special custom grew up in the houses of the order called "the plate of the Lord Jesus." The best portions of the dinner were put on a special plate and shared with the poor, reflecting Gilbert's lifelong concern for less fortunate people.

Throughout his life Gilbert lived simply, consumed little food and spent a good portion of many nights in prayer. Despite the rigors of such a life he died at well over age 100.

Wednesday, February 17 - Seven Founders of the Servite Order

Can you imagine seven prominent men of Boston or Denver banding together, leaving their homes and professions, and going into solitude for a life directly given to God? That is what happened in the cultured and prosperous city of Florence in the middle of the 13th century. The city was torn with political strife as well as the heresy of the Cathari, who believed that physical reality was inherently evil. Morals were low and religion seemed meaningless.

In 1240 seven noblemen of Florence mutually decided to withdraw from the city to a solitary place for prayer and direct service of God. Their initial difficulty was providing for their dependents, since two were still married and two were widowers.

Their aim was to lead a life of penance and prayer, but they soon found themselves disturbed by constant visitors from Florence. They next withdrew to the deserted slopes of Monte Senario.
In 1244, under the direction of St. Peter of Verona, O.P., this small group adopted a religious habit similar to the Dominican habit, choosing to live under the Rule of St. Augustine and adopting the name of the Servants of Mary. The new Order took a form more like that of the mendicant friars than that of the older monastic Orders.

Members of the community came to the United States from Austria in 1852 and settled in New York and later in Philadelphia. The two American provinces developed from the foundation made by Father Austin Morini in 1870 in Wisconsin.

Community members combined monastic life and active ministry. In the monastery, they led a life of prayer, work and silence while in the active apostolate they engaged in parochial work, teaching, preaching and other ministerial activities.

Thursday, February 18 - Blessed Fra Angelico

Growing up in a small town in Italy, Guido di Pietro was interested in two things. He wanted to follow Christ's example in all things and he wanted to develop his talent for painting. God showed him how these two things were his vocation. Our vocation is God's call to share in Jesus' life and work.

Guido was born in 1387, and when he was 18, he joined the Dominican order as a religious brother. Brothers are not priests. Religious brothers serve their community through prayer and work. It Italy, religious brothers are called "Fra."

Religious brothers are often given a new name. Guido's religious name was "Fra Giovanni" or Brother John. His work in his community was painting beautiful religious art, initially for manuscripts, which at the time were each copied by hand. The moment the members of his religious community saw his beautiful paintings, they said that he "painted like an angel." That is how he became known as "Fra Angelico."
Every day before he began to paint, Fra Angelico prayed that God would guide his hand and help him to create a painting that would inspire people to grow closer to God.

Fra Angelico became very famous. He painted holy figures and angels and was even called to Rome to paint portraits of the saints on the walls of the chapel of Pope Eugenius IV and then Pope Nicholas V. His work can be found in museums and churches and holy buildings throughout the world.
He died in Rome in 1455 and was beatified in 1982 by Pope John Paul II. The pope declared him the patron saint of Catholic artists in 1984.

We call Fra Angelico "Blessed." His life helps us to understand that we are called to use the gifts we have been given to serve others and to give glory and praise to God.

Does your Conference have any news, events, or any other information that you would like to share in the Friday Five? **Please note, that events can be advertised if they ONLY support the SVDP Conference.  Any events that are put on by a parish can no longer be advertised.**

If so, please email Rachel Esposito at to be include in the next edition of the Friday  Five! All information must be submitted by 3:00 pm on Wednesday. Thank you. 

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Please pray for Sister from St. Brigid Conference, Nell Sharrock.  She has been a Vincentian for many years.  She has provided service in many of the offices in the Conference and Council Office.She is currently in Hospice at home.  We thank you for all of your prayers. 

Thanks to all who prayed for one of our Vincentian's spouse, Adan Polanco, from St. Stanislaus Parish.  Praise God the family received wonderful news last week and he is now cancer free.  Praise the Lord and thanks to all for your prayers.
Please continue praying for Yolanda and Ramiro Ramirez, Angela Angel and Gloria de Luna,  all from St. Ann's Conference  who are experiencing health issues.