May 6, 2013
Saint Vincent de Paul Assembly
This year the Annual Assembly for the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul (SVDP) was held at Christ the King Parish in Courtenay–Comox. I drove up the Island on a gorgeous sunny Saturday to celebrate Mass for the Assembly and the parish and to join them for the evening banquet.
SVDP is one of the great charitable agencies of the Church around the world and this Assembly was for members from British Columbia and the Yukon. These are people who take the command of Jesus to feed the hungry and clothe the naked very seriously and do so in all sorts of ways.
I encouraged the delegates to become more familiar with Blessed Frederic Ozanam, the Parisian intellectual who re-discovered his Catholic Faith and began an outreach to the poor of Paris—eventually he attracted other like-minded young adults and formed the first conference of the SVDP Society.
It was great to be with these men and women who immensely enjoyed being in the Comox Valley for their Assembly. Since the days are getting longer, the drive home was a pleasant evening trip.
L to R: Claude Bedard, President of Christ the King Conference; Jean-Noel, President-elect National President; Fr. (Captain) George Helou, Military Chaplain Canadian Forces Base Comox; Penny Craig, current National President; Fr. Marek Paczka SDS, pastor Christ the King Parish; Bill Duncan, President of Vancouver Island Particular Council; Fr. Jim Beckema, Spiritual Director for SVDP in the Diocese; Bishop Richard Gagnon
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