As part of a lecture given at the Centre International de Formation (CIF), Father John E. Rybolt, C.M. outlines the early history of the apostolic activity of the Congregation of the Mission. Thank you to DePaul University for posting the Selected Works of Fr. Rybolt online.
Learn more about the Original Apostolates of the Congregation of the Mission, in this presentation:
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From a Letter of Vincent de Paul to the Pope:
“Most Holy Father, the end of our Institute is the salvation of poor country people. For this purpose we go about teaching in villages and towns, hear general confessions, settle quarrels and disputes, and assist the sick poor. These are our works in the rural areas. At home we give spiritual retreats, prepare the ordinands… for the worthy reception of Holy Orders, and instruct clerics in the seminaries in good morals, ecclesiastical discipline, and sacred rites… Besides our workers in France, we have some who perform similar ministries in Italy, Ireland and Barbary where they encourage and assist poor Christian slaves. There are others in the Indies, where they have gone in the name of Your Holiness to… Madagascar. Most Holy Father, wherever we are, on land or on sea, we are there only by your authority and favor to prepare people to receive the Gospel wherever Your Holiness should send us since Your Holiness represents Christ on earth.”
Letter to Pope Innocent X
August 28, 1650