The St. Thomas Conference of St. Vincent De Paul has a mission to fulfill at the local level the goals of the worldwide Society, i.e., to help the poor and marginalized of our community as Jesus Christ would have us do it, as exemplified by the work of St. Vincent De Paul himself and the Society’s founder, Blessed Frederick Ozanam. We aspire to implement the social justice teachings of the Church in our community.
Who we’re looking for
“He walked into the St. Thomas garage sale with a grin from ear to ear. I looked at him and said, ‘Hi, how are you?’ He replied, ‘I’m just fine since St. Thomas Church helped me.’ At that moment, I recognized him as one of our neighbors helped by the St. Vincent de Paul Society. He has been ill and unable to work for approximately six seeks. Because his job does not allocate sick pay, our neighbor fell behind on his rent. He’s one of the working poor. He makes too much money to get government assistance, but not enough money to pay his bills in the event of a medical emergency. He sought our help to assist with his rent, and you, our generous parishioners, responded. Our neighbor’s rent was paid. He has since gotten to a secure point with his finances and has even ‘paid it forward.’ He is so happy and says that every time he passes our church, he thanks God for your kindness and generosity.”
We call ourselves Vincentians, and we welcome the participation of all St. Thomas parishoners, adult women and men, who share our desire to help those in need via our home visit program. We ask that you be ready to extend help without prejudice and to see the face of Christ in those we serve.
The Society is not event oriented, but the Diocesan organization holds a September “Walk for the Poor” to raise funds, and we help with that. There is also a periodic Diocesan training session which we ask new Vincentians to attend.
Come to the St. Vincent De Paul monthly meeting on the second Tuesday of the month at 7 PM in the church conference room. Please note we do not meet in July or during Lent. The needs of the poor in our community require that we expand our ranks, and we would love to have you join us! You may also contact Mike Sims, email [email protected]; phone 309.696.8237.
When we learn of a person or family in need, we make the home visit in pairs, sometimes on somewhat short notice. There is some minimal paperwork and follow-up required for each case we handle. Often the need is for help with rent or utility bills. We do expect attendance at the monthly meeting as well.