Through serving the nobility St. Vincent de Paul fond his true place

Tuesday, 9/26/17

While most of the notable players in the Catholic Reformation were members of the nobility, Vincent de Paul was one of seven children in a family of French peasant farmers, and for the first half of his seventy-nine years he was busy only angling for the noble patronage he needed to keep afloat.
After studying the Humanities at a local Franciscan's free school, Vincent moved to nearby Toulouse where he supported himself by tutoring as he finished Theology studies, and was ordained at twenty. Then, in 1605 with hopes of a sharing an inheritance he set out on a coastal voyage to Marseilles, but he was captured by Turks who sold him into slavery.

For two years he lived as a slave in north Africa, gaining freedom then by converting a master who dropped him on France’s south coast. Making his way to Avignon, he wormed his way into the service of the papal legate. 
In 1609, at age twenty-nine, he accompanied a Legate to Rome. And once there he found a place in a delegation to King Henry IV of France.a 

After he had secured the needed patronage, and had his foot in the door of the aristocracy, Vincent returned to his peasant roots. After he had secured a position as spiritual director to the wife of the leader of the Gondi family, his heart went out to the peasants on their estates.
At first, Vincent on his own gave missions to the villagers who had been sent adrift with no religious life after their Baptisms. But in time he drew in other good-hearted priests joined him forming the nucleus of the Vincentian Fathers, known as the Congregation of the Mission, or familiarly as the C.M.s.

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