Social Ministry Saints
The book of Acts reminds us that charity is an essential part of our identity from the very beginning of our Church’s history:
The community of believers was of one heart and mind, and no one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they had everything in common. With great power the apostles bore witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great favor was accorded them all. There was no needy person among them, for those who owned property or houses would sell them, bring the proceeds of the sale, and put them at the feet of the apostles, and they were distributed to each according to need. – Acts, 4: 32-35
The social ministry office has three offices located at the house on one Aberdeen road. As we begin the new year we decided to dedicate these three offices to famous Catholic saints who inspire us in social ministry. For now I will briefly mention are three dedications, later on we will offer more details on how these saints inspire us and our social ministry.
The social ministry Director has dedicated his office to Gregory the Great. Pope Gregory dedicated himself to reforming the Church after the Roman Empire had collapsed and a large part of that reform was to develop social services and healthcare programs for the many people who were struggling with economic hardship and rampant diseases. The social ministry Administrator dedicated her office to St. Francis of Assisi. St. Francis is well known for his dedication to the poor and marginalized but he was also known for promoting peace in the midst of the crusades and his environmental spirituality. We recently offered the third office to our parish St. Vincent DePaul society and as such we dedicated the third office to the Vincetian founder St. Vincent DePaul himself. St. Vincent and his community dedicated themselves to developing charitable programs and organizations.
Another saint that has been added to this community is St. Ignatius of Loyola (as a Fordham graduate I could not ignore the Jesuit founder). A major aspect of Jesuit spirituality is our ability to find God in all things and this becomes a very important spiritual principle for us who address a variety of social issues and community situations.
With these four saints we hope to have a more intentional Catholic spirituality as we engage in furthering our social ministry programs and services in the new year.