Saint Vincent de Paul was a Catholic priest who served the poor. He was born on April 24 1581 in the village of Pouy, in Guyenne and Gascony, France and died on September 27 1660 in Paris, France. We celebrate his feast day on September 27 every year in the Catholic Church.
|Saint Vincent de Paul, Priest Biography|
|Date of Birth||April 24 1581|
|Place of Birth||Guyenne and Gascony, France|
|Profession||French Catholic Priest|
|Place of Work||France|
|Date of Death||September 27 1660|
|Place of Death||Paris, France|
|St. Vincent de Paul Feast Day||September 27|
|Beatification||By Pope Benedict XIII on August 13 1729 in Rome, Papal States|
|Canonization||By Pope Clement XII on June 16 1737 in Rome, Papal States|
|Patron Saint of||
St. Vincent de Paul Life History
St Vincent de Paul’s father was Jean and his mother was Bertrande de Moras de Paul and were peasant farmers. He was the third born of six children – three brothers and two sisters.
He joined the seminary when he was fifteen years and received education at a college in Dax, France. Later on, he studied theology at the University of Toulouse. At the age of nineteen years, on September 23 1600, he was ordained as a priest but because he was still not yet 24 years, he declined to take the role of a parish priest and continued with his theology studies.
After graduating with a Bachelor of Theology Degree from the University of Toulouse on October 12 1604, the following year, he was captured and enslaved for two years in Tunis, Tunisia. After being sold to several masters, his last master helped him escape back to France in 1607.
After landing in France, Vincent went to Rome to study for nearly two years then came back to France. He became friends with Cardinal Pierre de Bérulle who became his spiritual advisor. Cardinal Pierre made Vincent the Chaplain and tutor to the Florentine banking family of the Gondi.
The initial life of leisure that St Vincent de Paul had yearned for was changed after he heard the confession of a dying peasant and he experienced a change of heart.
After King Louis XIII died, his wife Queen Anne took over the rule of France as a regent and nominated Vincent de Paul as her spiritual adviser.
Vincent was introduced to many poor families by the Daughters of Charity. He tended to the poor by bringing them food and other essential supplies just to at least make their lives bearable and comfortable.
He mobilized the rich women of Paris to solicit funds for various uses like founding hospitals, missionary projects, relief funds for war victims, and ransom 1200 galley slaves from North Africa.
From these mobilizations, Vincent, with the help of Louise de Marillac started the Daughters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul which was associated with the Catholic Church.
After working briefly for the imprisoned galley slaves in Paris he became the superior of the Vincentians whose priests take the vows of chastity, stability, obedience, and poverty.
He organized retreats and training for priests and aided a lot in the establishment of seminaries and became a spiritual director of St. Mary of Angels Convent for twenty-eight years.
Death and Relics
Saint Vincent de Paul died on September 27 1660. His bones are preserved in a glass reliquary in Saint Vincent de Paul Chapel, Paris (The headquarters of the Vincentian fathers). His incorrupt heart is displayed at the chapel of the motherhouse of the Daughters of Charity in Paris.
Saint Vincent de Paul was beatified by Pope Benedict XIII on August 13 1729 in Rome, Papal States
Saint Vincent de Paul was canonized by Pope Clement XII on June 16 1737 in Rome, Papal States
Saint Vincent de Paul Feast Day
From 1737 till 1969, the feast day was celebrated on July 19 but it was transferred to September 27 after the 1969 revision of the General Roman Calendar.
Saint Vincent de Paul is the Patron Saint of
- Vincentian Service Corps
- Spiritual help
- Saint Vincent de Paul Societies
- Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory Catholic School, San Francisco, California
- Richmond, Virginia
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