St. Vincent De Paul Society

St. Vincent de Paul

We help people!

In a spirit of justice, charity and personal involvement, this ministry seeks to provide aid and comfort to the poor, the afflicted and the lonely.  Members of the Society make personal home visits; provide advocacy and support usually in the form of food vouchers, financial assistance, clothing and furniture.  (Training provided.)

“Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread”.  When we pray the Our Father, we ask God to provide our food and necessities. The majority of us receive sufficient food. Others do not. We can be our Father’s instrument by providing “bread” for the needy, particularly during these difficult times. You do this by your contributions to the St. Vincent de Paul Society

Thanks to all who contribute to our St. Boniface St. Vincent de Paul Conference. We were able to help many of our neighbors. Some people had no money for food, others no beds – they were sleeping on the floor – or there was no heat or electricity!

Help Those in Need on Long Island by donating your gently used furniture to the St. Vincent de Paul Society

  • We pick up items
  • We give furniture to our neighbors in need.
  • Your donations are tax-deductible

Buying a new car? Donate Your old one!  Donate your car, boat, motorcycle, or truck to help others!

Help us help others on Long Island by donating your motor vehicle, boat or even real estate.  Proceeds from sales of these items will go directly to helping our neighbors in need.

516-676-0676

www.svdprvc.org

St. Vincent de Paul

St Boniface Martyr Conference Annual Report, 2018

The Parish Conference of the St. Vincent de Paul Society has submitted its 2018 Annual Report to Fr. Kevin. The report reflects the activities of the 22 volunteers from our parish conference, and is required by the Rules of the Society for the fiscal year. It has been an active and rewarding time for our parish Vincentians.

Feed the hungry, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless. This is the simple, direct mandate by Christ to all followers. The reality is, for most of us, opportunities to follow the mandate are rare. Most people rarely personally encounter the hungry, naked or homeless.

The members of the St. Vincent de Paul Society are privileged to meet with the poor, face-to-face, in their homes, to demonstrate the love of Christ for His poor, and offer spiritual and material relief to them and their families. The Annual Report summarizes, in statistical format, the work of those volunteers, but hardly conveys their dedication to our neighbors in need.

Over the past year, the parish Vincentians made 61 visitations to the homes of the neighbors in need and provided help to 156 people in need of assistance. The Vincentians performed approximately 915 hours in service to those neighbors during the fiscal year.

At the heart of the Vincentian ministry is the “home visit” by pairs of Vincentians, not as invasive bureaucrats, but rather caring representatives of Christ’s love, through the Society of St. Vincent

de Paul. There is reciprocity, mutuality, in the service of Vincentians through the home visit that transforms the help from something that may have been humiliating into something that is honorable.

The Society initially was started at St. Boniface when parishioners formed a conference in 1934. The “home visit”, unique to the ministry and character of the Society, provides an opportunity for the poor and the deprived to communicate their individual needs with dignity in the comfort of their homes, and for the Vincentian visitors to analyze and respond to those identified needs.  The Society respects their privacy and all information is kept confidential.

Sometimes the most appreciated benefit conveyed by the Vincentians is the fact that they cared enough to visit the deprived and forgotten, regardless of race or religious belief.

During the past year, Vincentians in the Parish Conference expended  $30,744  for our neighbors. Typically, these disbursements were to pay rent, food vouchers, fuel, utilities, clothing, furniture, prescriptions, transportation, child care, etc. These payments were as varied and numerous as the individuals served.

The sources of income for the local ministry were also quite varied. The principal source of financial support is generous benefactors in the parish who share Christ’s love of the poor with our Vincentians. Their generosity makes them partners with the Vincentians in feeding the hungry, clothing the naked and sheltering the homeless. On behalf of the poor, thank you! Our gratitude to our benefactors in their support for St. Vincent de Paul is boundless. Income to the conference, $29,397, came from Conference members, Benefactors, SVdP envelopes, fundraisers i.e. Friends of the Poor Walk, our Harvest Dinner, Religious Education Lent mite boxes and the Thanksgiving mass collection so graciously donated by our Pastor, Fr. Kevin along with the poor boxes located near each entrance to the church.

The conference is particularly grateful for the constant interest and encouragement of our pastor, Fr. Kevin. Notwithstanding the many demands of his time, he has commended the work of the conference, celebrated a Mass of Thanksgiving attended by Conference members and benefactors and offered words of support, both privately and publicly, in our service of feeding, clothing and sheltering the poor. Thank you, Fr. Kevin.

Parishioners and others interested in financially supporting this work are encouraged to use the poor box located at the bottom of the stairs at the entrance of the Church or the boxes at the side doors of the Church for cash or check donations. Envelopes are available at the entrance of the Church.  Checks may also be made out to

St. Boniface Martyr conference of St. Vincent

de Paul and left at the Parish Center or mailed to the conference at the Parish Center, 145 Glen Avenue, Sea Cliff, NY, 11579. The Parish Conference is a charitable organization under Sec. 501© (3) of the IRC. Donations are tax deductible.

Thank you for your support and please keep our neighbors in need in your prayers. Deo Gratis.

Our Community Grows, c. 1900 – c. 1957

By October, 1923, a parish census showed 140 families where both spouses were Catholic, and 260 families where only one spouse was Catholic. There were then 859 Catholics in the parish. A Sunday School held at the time averaged 135 youngsters in attendance. Fifty were baptized that year; 26 made Holy Communion; thirteen couples were married; and there were 16 deaths.

Vintage post card view of the front entrance to St. Boniface School.

The “diamond-in-the-rough” who followed Father Sloane as pastor is still remembered by some in the community: Reverend Patrick J. Ford (1926-1937). Irish-born, with a tough exterior, he was the sort of pastor who visited his flock, family by family. Carrying forward Father Sloane’s dream, the school became his great effort, and it was brought to a reality at a cost of a quarter-million dollars. It opened in September, 1928, with an initial enrollment of 150 pupils, and the Sisters of Mercy of Dallas, Pennsylvania were enlisted to teach.

When the Great Depression hit the country, it seriously affected St. Boniface Martyr Parish. Few could meet pledges made in good faith, and the church was burdened with debt. Father Ford, in 1932, organized a “conference” of the St. Vincent de Paul Society as one bulwark against personal need suffered by the parishioners and others in Sea Cliff during those stark days. To make matters worse, in 1936, an arsonist set fire to the church building on three occasions, causing heavy damage and adding to the financial debt of the parish.

When Father Ford was moved to St. Sylvester’s in Brooklyn, he was succeeded by Reverend Charles B. Garvey (1937-46), a native of Cutchogue who was one of the first vocations from Suffolk County. During his pastorate, the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (CCD) was organized, the Confraternity of the Rosary was begun, and the Carmelite Third Order set up a chapter here.

During W.W.II parishioners knitted scarves, held blood-banks, rolled bandages, sat fire-watches, and entertained “the Boys” from Mitchell Field and Roslyn Air Base. They whispered about the strange boats quartered at Fyfe’s Shipyard in Glenwood Landing that were tested up and down the harbor (which they later learned were the “PT Boats” of Pacific fame). They wrote a lot of V-Mail letters and also held special prayer services for a victorious D-Day. As a matter of fact, they did a lot of praying! During the war, more than 400 men and women of St. Boniface served in the armed forces and of these, 15 made the supreme sacrifice of their lives.

During the era of post-world war prosperity, many Catholic families moved out to the suburbs and into the parish. Despite the return to better times, many still felt the pinch of the long depression. To aid them in adjusting financially, while helping them avoid the high interest rates of the loan companies, a cooperative credit union was established among the parishioners. Small loans at very low interest rates were of untold value.

Father Garvey died as pastor in 1946, and was succeeded within a month by the Reverend William J. Gately. Under Father Gately’s leadership, the parish debt was paid off, and the church, school, convent and rectory were repaired and redecorated.

In May, 1947, a census revealed that the parish had grown to 1,198 families representing 3,645 individuals. During Father Gately’s stay, the parish celebrated its Golden Jubilee in 1948, with a Solemn Mass of Thanksgiving, with the Most Reverend Thomas E. Molloy, Bishop of Brooklyn, presiding. Father Gately was instrumental in establishing a Mothers’ Club as a support for the parochial school.

In 1952, Reverend Thomas W. Smiddy succeeded Father Gately. After a year of dedicated pastoral work Father Smiddy, in 1953, was transferred to the Chancery Office in Brooklyn where he was eventually elevated to Papal Chamberlain as a Very Reverend Monsignor. In exchange, the man who held that post in Brooklyn, Very Reverend Monsignor Vincent J. Baldwin, came to St. Boniface. He was aided in his adjustment to the life of pastor by Fathers O’Mara and Canning, who had long served in the parish. Three years later, Monsignor Baldwin left for St. Aloysius in Great Neck, and was succeeded by the Reverend John J. Fee.

Since three successive pastors, Fathers Gately, Smiddy and Baldwin, had each won high office in the Church after leaving St. Boniface, it was said at the time that a priest apparently “is never simply transferred from St. Boniface — he’s promoted!”

About a year after Father Fee’s arrival, an important change occurred. The Brooklyn Diocese had, from 1853, extended control over the entire length of Long Island. In May 1957, Nassau and Suffolk counties were separated from the old order and designated as a new diocese with its seat at Rockville Centre. The Most Reverend Walter P. Kellenberg became the new Bishop. At this time, Father Fee’s devotion to Mary was recognized and he was appointed director of the Legion of Mary for the new diocese, a post which he held until his death.

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