St. Mary's Conference of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul
We are 31 women and men, quietly at work in the community. We serve everyone. Through person-to-person contact, the members provide personal and neighborly service to those having a difficult time. We swing into action when a person or family in need of a helping hand makes a telephone call to St. Mary's rectory. Within a few hours, a return call is made to the person in need, in order to make arrangements for a home visit. Two SVdP members visit with the person. We always travel in pairs. After learning more about the situation during the home visit, immediate help is given. All information is kept confidential, and each person is treated with dignity. Follow-up contacts may take place at the rectory, over the phone, or in the home again. Since our first meeting in January 1990, we have helped hundreds and hundreds of families in our community.
The SVdP Society offers help to those in need. Help may take various forms: financial help, fuel assistance, housing, food from our food pantry, transportation, medicine, clothing, friendship, referrals, eye glasses, furniture, informed help, a gift card for milk, fresh vegetables, etc., and hope.
Our entire funding comes from donations. We have many sources of income: St. Mary Parish, SVdP members, parishioners, parish groups, local companies and organizations, the Knights of Columbus, a Christmas card donation program, and the Friends of the Poor Walk. Donations in memory of loved ones are also made. St. Vincent de Paul Headquarters in Stoughton helps annually with a certain percentage of reimbursement for oil and electric bills which we have paid. We can also call upon the Franklin Interfaith Council to help residents heat their homes.
Our monthly food collection always allows us to bring groceries to those in need. At Thanksgiving, the SVdP headquarters offers us food boxes with all the fixin' for Thanksgiving. We conduct a Thanksgiving Food Drive to supplement the food boxes. We also order food boxes from headquarters for Easter.
When people need clothing, we send them to the SVdP Thrift Store in Plainville. When people need furniture, we order furniture from the SVdP store in Stoughton.
Throughout the year, our St. Vincent de Paul Society conducts various parish-wide drives. We take up collections of gift bags for Mother's Day, backpacks full of back-to-school supplies, and a July 4th Freedom from Hunger Food Drive.
We are able to give the people whom we serve Christmas presents through the generosity of the Caring Tree Committee and the parishioners of St. Mary Parish.
One year, on the feast of St. Vincent de Paul, we invited our benefactors to coffee, juice, and pastries after the 7:00 a.m. weekday Mass. Periodically, we hold membership drives. Each year, around the feast of St. Vincent de Paul (September 27), a Mass is offered for our benefactors and for those whom we serve.
In September of each year, we organize a local Friends of the Poor Walk.
This is who we are: volunteers who are always on call. All our work is made possible through the outstanding support from parishioners of St. Mary Parish and our friends in the community.
Thank you and God bless!
To learn more about the National Council of the United States of SVDP, please click here: www.svdpusa.org.
To learn more about our food pantry, please click here.
Let us reflect on the words of our Lord, Jesus Christ, recalling His unity and presence among us: "Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." Lord Jesus, deepen our Vincentian spirit of friendship during this meeting, make us responsive to the Christian calling, to see and find the forgotten, the suffering or the deprived, so that we may bring them Your love. Help us to be generous with our time, our possessions, and ourselves, in this mission of charity. Perfect in us Your love and teach us to share more fully in the Eucharistic sacrifice offered for all.
(Taken from our opening prayer)
Name of ministry or group: St. Mary's Conference of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul
Meeting days and times: Volunteers meet on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of each month at 7:00 p.m. for about an hour and a half
Location of meetings: church hall
Total number of members: 31 dedicated volunteers
Examples of activities or ministry's work: Make home visits to those in need of help, help with the food pantry, run parish-wide drives, help in any way possible. A member may give help in his or her area of expertise.
Time commitment for a member: Whatever the volunteer's schedule permits
Who is eligible to join: Any adult. New members are always welcome and needed!
Contact person: please call the rectory
Phone: 508-528-0020 (rectory)