The Society of St. Vincent de Paul

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The SVP was formed in 1833 by a 20 year old student at the Sorbonne in Paris. Frederic Ozanam chose as patron St. Vincent de Paul, who had lived two hundred years earlier.

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Although only a student, Ozanam was a great defender of the Church, and when confronted by critics who claimed that the Church was doing nothing to help the poor and asked him "show us your works", he responded by forming the Society. At first there was just Ozanam and a few friends, but the movement soon grew.

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The first conference in England was formed in 1845 and today there are more than 75,000 members actively working in 120 countries.

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Most of our work within St. Jude's Parish comprises visiting the sick, old people's homes and hospitals, and providing clothing or food hampers for the needy.

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At a national level we are involved in special works. We have opened hostels for the homeless and raise around 250,000 annually to maintain them. This initiative was originally started within our own Liverpool Archdiocese and has proved to be very successful.

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Overseas, the Society helps thousands of people directly in the Third World through the twinned conferences scheme. This is where a conference in England and Wales is twinned with a conference say, in India, Grenada or the Sudan. In addition to giving financial assistance to these areas, correspondence is carried on, giving insight into the respective lifestyles.

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We are always grateful for any support, particularly financial, but we do need new members! Here at St. Jude's, members are growing older and, when one of our membership dies or becomes too old to carry on, we have difficulty finding a replacement. Membership of the Society is not restricted and almost anyone can join regardless of age or sex.

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If you do feel inspired enough to accept the challenge to "show us your works" as Frederic Ozaman did in 1833, you are welcome to join. Meetings are held fortnightly on Thursday evenings. All you have to do is make contact with a member of the clergy, our President, Bernard Jennings, or the Hon. Secretary, Kevin Higgins.

 
You can find out more about the SVP by visiting their website via our links page.