Spirituality for Today – January 2016 – Volume 20, Issue 6

Saint of the Month
Saint Vincent Pallotti

January 22

A photo of Saint Vincent PallottiSaint Vincent Pallotti

Born in 1795, Vincent Pallotti grew up comfortably as the son of a successful grocer. Encouraged by a spiritual director, Vincent was a pious child. He was extremely devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary and deeply concerned with the care of the poor.

At the age of 15, he decided to give up his secular life and enter the priesthood. Vincent was ordained when he was 23, in 1818.

Even though he never aspired to a higher position or rank within the Church, and often found himself working outside of the established hierarchy, Vincent set an example through his charitable work and ability to organize and motivate others. Through the years, these qualities would endear him to popes, cardinals and bishops, making Vincent a beloved and respected leader.

Vincent became a priest just as the Industrial Revolution brought sweeping changes into the lives of the poor. Thousands of workers in the new factories and their families found themselves cut off from the lives their parents had known Vincent sparked a new sense of Church involvement with those workers and with the poor and orphaned left behind by the new economy. Workers, peasants, soldiers, and even prisoners were all included in his ministry.

To better reach the needy, Vincent founded the Congregation of the Catholic Apostolate and gathered priests who would carry out his ideas. He later created a related order for women, called the Pallottine Missionary Sisters. He had the approval of the Pope, and both organizations have survived him with the blessings of the modern church hierarchy.

Lord our God,
ruler of the Kingdom of Heaven and all else,
we thank You for having brought the compassion
and vision of St. Vincent Pallotti
among us in that time of turmoil and need.
We thank You for the message that he carried,
of a rich, warm and expansive expression of Your message of love.
And we ask for guidance in following his example
of love and compassion in the modern world.


From Ordinary People, Extraordinary Lives