Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Daughter of Charity "Triduum"

November 27th-29th are special feast days for the over 19,000 Daughters of Charity around the world.

November 27th is the celebration of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal. I was at the motherhouse for this celebration last year where the apparitions to St. Catherine occured. Here is the crowd waiting to get into the next Mass in the alley. I took the photo from my bedroon!There was a continual string of Masses several with bishops. It was amazing to experience the devotion of the French people to the Blessed Mother!!

November 28th is the feast of St. Catherine Laboure. She lived a quiet humble life taking care of elderly men. During her lifetime it wasn't know who Blessed appeared to except it was one of the many Sisters in the "seminary"/novitiate. Catherine was asked directly as the years passed if she was "the one", but she always found away to avoid answering the question. Her identity was not revealed until after her death. For Catherine, her experience was not about her, but about promoting prayer among the common people---which it has done!

Here is a link to our motherhouse site where you can see a video showing the chapel and the special art in the "alley". There are also links to the "Gift of the Medal" and "History of the Medal".

On November 29th is the feast of the Founding of the Daughters of Charity by St. Vincent de Paul and St. Louise de Marillac--1633, almost 200 years before St. Catherine. The photo above includes a re-enactment of the first Daughters of Charity dressed as they would have. There is a great speech that St. Vincent gives in the movie "Monsieur Vincent". It is not actually his words, but SO captures his spiritual way. In the movie St. Vincent de Paul is giving advice to Sister Jean who is going on her first visit to the poor. He says:

"You will find that charity is a heavy burden to carry, heavier than the kettle of soup and the basket of bread. But you must keep your gentleness and your smile. Giving soup and bread isn't all; that the rich can do. You are the little servant of the poor, the maid of charity, always smiling and in good humor. They are your masters, terribly sensitive and exacting as you will see, but the uglier and dirtier they are, the more unjust and bitter, the more you must give them your love. It is only because of your love, only your love, that the poor will forgive you the bread you give them."

It is awesome to be connected to such great saints! Their example and writings continue to challenge me to grow closer to Christ in prayer and through those living in poverty. To meet the many saints of the Vincentian family go to:

Please pray for the Daughters of Charity around the world as we celebrate these special days. Especially pray for our Sisters in Haiti as they fight the cholera epidemic.


  1. what powerful words......I have lifted the Sisters 7 people of Haiti in prayer....hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!