“St. Vincent de Paul Society is an International Catholic organization of laypersons that seeks, in the spirit of justice and charity and by a person-to-person involvement to help those who are in need,” Mary Ann Bush, President of St. Vincent de Paul Society, said.
The society works to provide personal and neighborly help by organizing themselves into small working groups, known as "Conferences." All of the work done by the society is voluntary and made successful by donations by their parishioners and from local clubs for the outreach program.
St. Vincent de Paul Society, commonly referred to as “SVdP,” helps St. John Bosco church community and surrounding neighborhoods, located in Hatboro. The society also expands its services to communities that do not have a local SVdP.
“We help with food, rent, oil, assist in job seeking and also have Thanksgiving and Christmas Outreach, where we provide a holiday meal and gifts for Christmas, mostly donated by the parishioners,” Bush said with delight.
During the Lenten season, SVdP hosts an event known as a “Poorman's Supper,” which is open to everyone. It consists of all bread, water, tea, coffee and all homemade soups. This event is to “bring an awareness of the local poverty in our area,” Bush said, adding that last year, “Poorman's Supper” had approximately 100 people in attendance.
Each year the event has a speaker. Last year’s speaker was the nationally known Sister Mary Scullion. She runs Project H.O.M.E., in Philadelphia.
She appeared on the cover of “Time,” Mayor Nutter named her to the Board of Ethics, and she partners with Bon Jovi to build homes for the poor.
This year’s speaker is Sister Patricia Evigan, better known as Sister Pat.
“She is a Daughter of Charity and her order helped in the organizing of SVdP,” Bush said.
Ever since St. John Bosco started in 2004, they have helped hundreds of families. Through personal visits and consultations, monetary assistance, in-kind goods and services and the outreach programs, their volunteers never stop lending a hand to that in need.
They work closely with PECO, Welfare, Bucks County Opportunity Council and many more.
“Everything we do with a client is in strict confidence,” Bush said.
This year’s “Poorman’s Supper” will be held at St. John Bosco Drexel Hall cafeteria, 215 E. County Line Road. Hatboro, at 6 p.m. on March 3.
To learn more about St. Vincent de Paul Society, check out their website at www.svdpusa.org.