Hard Work and Sheer Joy: Toward a Vincentian Campus Culture . G . Gregory Gay, C.M. Superior General Congregation of the Mission Niagara University, 3 April 2014. About Us: Congregation of the Mission. O ver 3000 priests and brothers from 55 provinces and regions
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G. Gregory Gay, C.M.
Congregation of the Mission
3 April 2014
New mission in Tierra del Fuego, South America
Week of service in Philadelphia
Life was good!
God touched Vincent’s heart to re-direct his abilities to organize and motivate others.
“Education that makes a difference”
What is that difference?
Niagara University is a manifestation and continuation of the vision of Saint Vincent de Paul.
158 years with the Vincentian priests and brothers-- a seminary that evolved into a university
Bishop Stephen V. Ryan, C.M., provincial
superior of the American Vincentians,
second bishop of Buffalo
Five major Vincentian universitiesapproved a Sponsorship Statement:
“Vincentian sponsorship is a rich concept referring to the many ways that the mutual relationship between Vincentians and their institutes of higher education contribute to building up of the Kingdom of God.”
This is what St. Vincent believed, taught, and put into practice: all our efforts must have their origin and end in God, who guides and gives us strength.
Vincentian colleges and universities should admit and promote the development of the poor.
Students should be imbued with sensitivity for the poor.
They should be places where Catholic moral, intellectual, and social traditions are taught in their great richness to the next generation, seeking to nourish the gift of faith.
They should always serve the poor by providing access to higher education for poor and marginalized students, and direct the expertise of their faculty and the energy of their students to the service of the poor.
They should develop a distinctive Vincentian theology of service, and include reflection and dialogue on the encounter with Christ in the experience of service
Highland Community Greenfields Project
Pope Francis has captivated many across the globe with his warmth, simplicity, and advocacy for the poor
In his homilies, the Holy Father coined a phrase: “the globalization of indifference”
Thanksgiving meal for refugees
at Journey's End
St. Vincent de Paul developed a spirituality of service, based on seeing Christ in the poor and the poor in Christ. Despite his many activities, Vincent was first and foremost a “mystic of charity.”
You and I may never reach the same level of achievement, selfless service, or mysticism of Vincent. But we can try, can’t we? Niagara is where this wonderful ‘labor of love’ can begin, grow, and lead us more deeply into the beauty and mystery of learning to serve the poor in Christ.
“I slept peacefully, and dreamt that life was sheer joy.
I awoke suddenly, and discovered that life was hard work.
I served my neighbor faithfully, and behold!
Hard work became sheer joy.”