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In the spirit of charity and justice and guided by the Gospel, the St. Vincent de Paul Society of St. Joseph County is a Catholic lay organization that engages people to join together, live their faith and grow spiritually through person-to-person service to all in need.
The mission of the St. Vincent de Paul Society comes directly from the Gospel and is profoundly simplistic. We believe that our blessings - time, talent and treasure - are to be shared with our brothers and sisters in need. We also believe that our own spiritual growth depends on our response to that need. Energized by the awareness that service to our brothers and sisters in need is in fact an encounter with our Lord Jesus Chjrist, our members are keenly aware that poverty, suffering and loneliness are present for thousands in St. Joseph County. Spiritual growth through service to those in need is a critical component of our mission. Our motto, "In Giving, We Receive," speaks as much to our own mission as to the support we seek from those who share our commitment of service to the poor.
The St. Vincent de Paul Society directly serves the poor and those in need in our community by providing food, emergency financial assistance, clothing and furniture to over a quarter of the population of St. Joseph County annually. The work of the Society is performed almost exclusively by our nearly 2,000 volunteers.
The Society performs its work in the community through direct access to the poor at our St. Vincent de Paul Center on Crescent Avenue in South Bend, through 18 "conferences" housed and supported by most the Catholic parishes in the county, and through the good works of our two Thrift Stores. The community at large is involved in our mission as well through their material donations and by their patronage of our Thrift Stores. Donations to our Thrift Stores not only provide the goods needed for direct assistance to those in need, but also valuable merchandise for resale. The profits from our stores are used to fund our vital programs and services.