Sacred Heart Parish in Marengo is launching a new local Conference of a Society that is 185 years old. Founded in France in 1833 by a group of young laymen, the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul is a lay Catholic organization of volunteer women and men, committed to offer person-to-person help to all those in need. It is funded mainly from donations.

Inspired by the works and writings of the Catholic Saint Vincent de Paul, the Society seeks to “embrace the world in a network of charity.” This means that members do not emphasize simply giving assistance to those in need--though they certainly do that—but call for members to seek to grow in their own spiritual lives of charity in partnership with those they serve. Since 1845 the Society of St. Vincent de Paul has grown exponentially in the United States. There are local conferences in every state of the Union, in large cities, small towns and rural communities.

Putting a more contemporary voice to the Society’s mission, their website states the goal to “End poverty through systemic change.” Each local conference goes about its work based on how they discern local needs. The Sacred Heart Chapter’s mission statement says, “We provide relief to the needy in our Marengo/ Union community by assisting with food, bill payments and other types of life’s hardships that people are going through.” Conference members will go out in pairs to visit all who request assistance, ascertain their needs, and work with the local conference to meet those needs.

If you or someone you know needs help, there are two ways to contact the Sacred Heart Conference: Call their dedicated line at 779-548-5057 and leave a detailed message. Someone will soon return your call. You can also email them at shdispatch@svdp-marengoil.org.

If you feel drawn to become part of this conference and share in their mission (Catholic Church membership is not required) or if you would like to make a donation to help support their outreach, you can use the same phone number and e-mail address. All inquiries and offerings will be most welcome.

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