The Mission Hub

The Pontifical Mission Societies include the Society for the
Propagation of the Faith, the Missionary Childhood Association, the Society of St.Peter Apostle, and the Missionary Union of Priests and Religious. These Societies promote a prayerfulmissionary spirit among baptized Catholics and to gather a fund of support for the evangelizing and pastoral programs of more than 1,150 local churches of the Developing World.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Pray to the Lord of the Harvest

Many people are not aware that there are four Pontifical Mission Societies. Of course, the most familiar is the Society for the Propagation of the Faith. The Society of Saint Peter Apostle, though less well known, is charged with equally vital work by the Holy Father: that of helping to educate local clergy in the Missions.

The Society of Saint Peter Apostle had its origins in 1889 in France. Stephanie and Jeanne Bigard, who were mother and daughter, responded to a request made by the French bishop of Nagasaki, Japan. He was desperately in need of money to keep his seminary open in order to be able to provide training for native Japanese priests. Like the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, the Society of Saint Peter Apostle started with just a small group of dedicated laity and now counts among its supporters people on every continent. Today there are some 30,000 seminarians studying in 400 major seminaries all over the world. Support through the Society of Saint Peter Apostle ensures that these young men may continue to answer the call to serve as priests. In addition, close to 10,000 novices in religious communities of both men and women receive assistance.

The seminarians singing and dancing in the video clip below attend Christ the King Seminary in Nyeri, Kenya. They are supported directly by sacrifices made to the Society of St. Peter Apostle.

It is good for us to recall that, for the first hundred years of our existence as a diocese, the Catholics in Boston were living in “missionary territory.” We benefited from assistance provided by the Pontifical Mission Societies in Europe, among them the Society of Saint Peter Apostle. Since the Church in Boston has “come into its own,” we have shown time and time again that we remember our own humble beginnings and are eager to help Catholic communities throughout the world flourish and grow into maturity.

As an act of thanksgiving for the dedicated priests and religious who serve in parishes and various other ministries in the Archdiocese of Boston, I invite you during this Thanksgiving and Christmas season to consider a gift to the Society of Saint Peter Apostle through our website. God will never be outdone in generosity to those who enable priests and religious to go out and spread the Good News to the farthest corners of our world.
Rev. Rodney J. Copp, J.C.L.

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