St. Vincent de Paul Chapter

of St. Patrick of Heatherdowns

The St. Patrick of Heatherdowns' St. Vincent de Paul conference(SVdP) in one of the most vibrant in northwest Ohio, serving hundreds of our needy brothers and sisters. While many Catholic parishes have SVdP conferences, the vibrancy of our conference is because of the benevolence of our parishioners who provide us with food and cash donations to give a hand up to those struggling and the heartfelt service or our volunteers known as Vincentians. 

We operate under the mantra that "no work of charity is foreign to the society". Some of the services include:

  • Food for the hungry
  • Rent and mortgage assistance
  • Utility bill assistance
  • Prescription assistance
  • Referrals to other help agencies

To obtain help, or to volunteer your services, please call 419-381-9835 and one of our Vincentians will contact you.

Feed your Neighbor

The second weekend of every month is Feed Your Neighbor Weekend. We humbly ask that when coming to Mass, you bring a nonperishable food or personal care items to be distributed to those in need. We will occasionally ask for special items on those weekends.

The items are dropped off in the narthex and our Vincentians transport them to the food pantry and arrange them for distribution. Cash donations are also collected on those weekends.

Food Pantry

Our food pantry is the largest in northwest Ohio with non perishable food items and a stocked freezer and refrigerator with fresh and frozen foods for our hungry brothers and sisters.

We also have personal care items such as toothbrushes, tooth paste, soaps and shampoos, paper products and many more items.

In addition to donations from our parishioners, we are also members of the Toledo Northwest Ohio Food Bank. Our membership allows us to receive  government surplus food and items donated by area grocery stores.

Business partnerships

A number of area businesses work with us in our mission to help the poor. The business owners or management set up collection points in their offices or factories and receive donations. Two of our biggest supports are Dr. Jeff Koepler and Ryan Hutchinson of Healthsource Toledo Southwest and the Dollar Store.

In one case, an area manufacturer delivered a truck load of much needed items right to our door.

St. Vincent de Paul

a brief History

St. Vincent de Paul is the largest Catholic lay organization in the United States and the world. The founder of St. Vincent de Paul Society was Frederic Ozanam. Fredric was a husband and father, a college professor, and servant of the poor. He founded the Society of St. Vincent de Paul as a young student with others of the Sorbonne in Paris. Sister Rosalie Rendu, a Daughter of Charity, is considered the mentor of Frederick and the St. Vincent de Paul Society, as she taught the first members the art of  helping the poor and the sick. Fredric's writings on social justice anticipated the first social encyclical of our modern times, Rerum Novarum.

St. Vincent de Paul in the United States

While historians are not certain about some details, there is no doubt that the Society of St. Vincent de Paul was established in St. Louis Missouri at the Basilica of St. Louis, King of France, popularly called "The Old Cathedral", in 1845. Fr. John Timon, CM, an American Vincentian priest from Pennsylvania, and later bishop of Buffalo, New York, was the one who brought copies or the Rule of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul back from Dublin, Ireland, to St. Louis. Timon talked to various people about the society and it's wonderful work with the poor. 

Bishop Peter Richard Kenrick, successor of the first bishop of St. Louis, Joseph Rosati, CM, asked Father Ambrose Heim to establish the Society of St. Vincent de Paul and be its Spiritual Advisor. Father Heim was known by all for his zeal and ministry with the poor. He became known as "the Priest of the Poor" . The first meeting of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in the United States was held on November 20, 1845, only twelve years  after its founding in Paris. Nineteen of the most prominent Catholic laymen of St. Louis attended. Dr. Moses Linton was elected President, Bryan Mullanphy, Vice President, Dennis Galvin, Second Vice President, James Maguire Jr., Secretary, Patrick Ryder, Treasurer, and Father Ambrose Heim, Spiritual Advisor. The Conference was aggregated(formally recognized) by the Society's International Council in Paris on February 2, 1846.

Sister Rosalie Rendue

Sister Rosalie Rendu, closely associated with the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, entered the Motherhouse of the Daughters of Charity at the age of 17. She took vows to serve God and the poor, and spent over 50 years living out those vows. She opened a free clinic, a pharmacy, a school, an orphanage, a childcare center, a home for the elderly and a youth club for young workers. She became known as the "good mother to all". and helped Fredric Ozanam and his friends do good works, which is how the St. Vincent de Paul Society started.

As well as assisting the poor in the streets and their homes, Sister Rosalie showed great courage and leadership during the bloody uprisings that took place in France in 1830 and 1848. During the battles, Sister Rosalie would climb up on the barricades - risking her life - to help wounded soldiers, regardless of which side they were fighting on.

St. Vincent de Paul Vincentian spirit

Members of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul (or Vincentians) are men and women who strive to grow spiritually by offering person to person service to individuals in need. We are blessed with an awareness that our blessings (time, talent, treasures) are to be shared with our brothers and sisters in need.

We know that we are not alone. We are part of an international society of friends united by a spirit of poverty, humility, and sharing, which is nourished by prayer and reflection, mutually supportive gatherings and adherence to a basic Rule.

Energized by the awareness that service to our brother or sister in need is in fact an encounter with our Lord Jesus Christ, members of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul are keenly aware that poverty, suffering and loneliness are present for millions in our communities. For that reason, we collaborate with all who seek to relieve need and address its causes..

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul offers tangible assistance to those in need on a person to person basis. It is this personalized involvement that makes the work of the Society unique. This aid may take the form of intervention, consultation, or often through direct dollar or in aid service. An essential precept of the Society's work is to provide help while conscientiously maintaining the confidentiality and dignity of those who are served. The Society recognizes that it must assume, also a role of advocacy for those who are defenseless or voiceless. Some 12 million persons are helped annually by Vincentians in the United States.

The list of services of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in the United States is endless. No work of charity is foreign to the Society. To quote our patron, St. Vincent de Paul; "Charity is infinitely inventive."

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul in the United States

Membership in the United States includes more than 172,000 in more than 4600 communities. The national headquarters is in St. Louis. Programs include home visits, housing assistance, disaster relief, job training and placement, food pantries, dining halls, clothing, transportation and utility costs, care for the elderly and medicine. The Society in the United States provides more than $675 million in tangible and in kind services, serves more then 14 million people in need each year, preforms more than 654,000 visits to people in their homes, and delivers more then 7 million service hours to those in need.

The National Council also coordinates a car donation program and Friends of the Poor Walks as major ongoing fund raisers.

Other Resources:

To donate or to ask for help, the St. Patrick of Heatherdowns SVdP Conference can always be reached by phone at 419-381-9835

There is a Facebook page to reference. The link is here.

The National Council can be best reached by downloading the mobile app from Google Play or the App Store.