Mission Statement of the Society:
Inspired by Gospel values, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, a Catholic lay organization, leads women and men to join together to grow spiritually by offering person-to-person service to those who are needy and suffering, in the tradition of its founder, Blessed Frederic Ozanam, and patron, St. Vincent de Paul.
Members, who are known as Vincentians, are drawn from every ethnic and cultural background, age group and economic level, as a reflection of the whole family of God. Vincentians are united in an international society of charity by their spirit of poverty, humility and sharing, which is nourished by prayer and reflection, mutually supportive gatherings and adherence to a basic Rule.
Organized locally, Vincentians witness Godís love by embracing all works of charity and justice. The Society collaborates with other people of good will in relieving need and addressing its causes, making no distinction in those served, because in them Vincentians see the face of Christ.
THE STATE OF POVERTY IN AMERICA:
For the second consecutive year, the poverty rate and the number of Americans living in poverty both rose from the prior years. Since 2000, the number of poor Americans has grown by 3 million. The official poverty rate in 2002 (the most current year for which figures are available) was 12.1 percent, up from 11.7 percent in 2001. Total Americans below the official poverty thresholds numbered 34.6 million, a figure 1.7 million higher than the 32.9 million in poverty in 2001. (U.S. Census Bureau, Poverty in the United States: 2002, Current Population Reports, September 2003.) Click to find out more