The Vincentians - Volume 6
THE SUBTITLE OF THIS SIXTH AND FINAL VOLUME of The Vincentians, “Internationalization and Aggiornamento (1919–1980),” describes the growth and change of the Congregation of the Mission in the twentieth century. Formerly European in focus, the provinces of the Congregation gained their own voice. Membership in mission lands, such as China, Brazil, and Ethiopia, surged, as local vocations joined their European confreres. The same is true of maturing provinces elsewhere. St. Vincent de Paul’s congregation became internationalized in both outreach and membership.
The Vincentians in these recent decades also tasted the bitterness of persecution. The Congregation was suppressed at various times in Europe, Latin America, Asia, and Africa. Its members often reacted by moving elsewhere, thus furthering the internationalization of the Vincentian charism. Under the Nazis and Communist regimes, many suffered imprisonment, torture, and death. The provinces of Central Europe (Slovakia, Hungary, and Poland), to say nothing of China, were particularly hard-hit.
Updating (aggiornamento) was the watchword toward the close of this period. As society changed, so did the Church, and with it the Vincentians. The process was difficult and painful, but it moved the Congregation in directions originally laid down by the Founder. Increasingly, the members emphasized mutual cooperation with many Vincentian-inspired lay organizations, the Vincentian Family. The inspiration shared among them all has been a further manifestation of the compelling insights of St. Vincent de Paul.
”I remember the day we first discussed the project at a Council meeting. After lengthy discussion, we just put our toes in the water, so to speak, and felt safe in appointing Fathers Román and Mezzadri for the first volume. I thank God that Father Rybolt has had the energy and drive to press ahead and launch out into the deep. I pray that the Lord will give him the health and strength to see the project through to the finish. “Finis coronat opus.”
Richard F. McCullen, C.M.
Superior General, 1980-92
"The Vincentians helps readers understand the Congregation of the Mission’s history by highlighting those world events that strongly influenced the community’s development. At the same time, these volumes highlight the complex lives of the leaders responsible for this development."
John T. Richardson, C.M.
President, DePaul University, 1981-93
About the Author
John E. Rybolt, C.M. did his advanced studies in theology and Sacred Scripture, taught in the seminaries of the Congregation of the Mission, and directed the Centre International de Formation: St. Vincent de Paul, in Paris. He has published numerous books and studies on Sacred Scripture, St. Vincent de Paul, and the Congregation of the Mission.
|Publication Date||Nov 15, 2015|
|Author||John E. Rybolt, CM|