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.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

One Family in Mission

In addition to The Society for the Propagation of the Faith and The Society of Saint Peter Apostle, there are two more Pontifical Mission Societies that serve the missionary activity of the Church.

The Holy Childhood Association dates back to the mid-nineteenth century. French Bishop Charles de Forbin-Janson brought to Pauline Jaricot his deeply-held desire to help the poorest of the world’s children in mission countries. It was Pauline’s suggestion that Bishop Forbin-Janson enlist the assistance of the children of France to provide this charitable outreach. Thus came into being the Holy Childhood Association.

Today, “HCA” is instrumental in educating children all over the world about the Church’s missionary activity. Cardinal Sean has made the establishment of HCA in every Catholic school and parish program of Religious Education a top priority. We are fortunate in our office to have the talent and expertise of Maureen Crowley Heil, our Program Director, who has over a decade of experience in the development of school and parish programs for Holy Childhood at the local and national level. We are busy implementing the mandate of Cardinal Sean in order to instill missionary awareness into the faith formation of the children of the Archdiocese of Boston and bring to everyday experience Bishop Forbin-Janson’s philosophy of “children helping children.”

The fourth Pontifical Mission Society is the Missionary Union of Priests and Religious, founded in Italy by Father Paolo Manna, a missionary priest who served in Myanmar and Burma. In 1916 Father Manna founded the Missionary Union of Priests and Religious as a spiritual support group for the Church’s missionary activity. The Missionary Union also exists to remind every Catholic that, by the virtue of their baptism, they are missionaries.

These four Societies received the official title of “Pontifical” work in 1922. National offices exist in more than one hundred twenty countries, but they are joined together under the leadership of the Holy Father through the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples in Rome. These four missionary societies are constituted as the official missionary activity of the Church. Your prayerful and financial support enables our Holy Father to fulfill the command of Jesus in Matthew’s Gospel to “go forth and teach all nations.”

For more information on the missionary activity of the church, please see our website.

-Fr. Rodney J. Copp, JCL

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