Luigi Mezzadri, C.M.

Le Missioni Popolari della Congregazione

della Missione nei secoli XVII-XVIII. I. Studi

Published by CLV-Edizioni Vincenziane, Rome, Italy, 1999 (551 pages)

This is the first of a two-volume collective work which is under the direction of L. Mezzadri; among other contributors is Luigi Nuovo, C.M. This first volume is a collection of "Studies" and the second will contain "Documents."

The popular or parish missions peaked between the 17th and 19th centuries. The Congregation of the Mission participated intensely in this missionary activity and, in Italy, it became the principal task. The present work aims at preserving the historical memory of these Vincentians missions. The period studied is from 1638 to 1796: from the first and timid appearance of the Vincentian missionaries until the French occupation of the Italian peninsula. Much has been published about the missions in Italy but in a scattered manner. This work gathers a part of the abundant existing material in order to offer to researchers an organic presentation of what the Congregation accomplished in Italy.

This volume is divided into two parts. The first, of 150 pages, exposes and analyzes "The Vincentian Missionary Project." It gathers together articles: on the history of the missions in the context of the history of the preaching; on the historiography of the missions; on the method of the popular missions; and on other related themes, like the catechism, feasts, and popular piety. This part concludes with a bibliography of the Italian Vincentian publications of the last 25 years.

The second part, "The Missions in the Italian States," gathers in 400 pages a number of very well documented studies on the missionary activity accomplished by the Vincentians in the diverse regions of Italy, starting from the houses of the Congregation of Turin (Piedmont), Ferrara, Florence (Tuscany), Bastia (Corsica), Rome, Tivoli, Perugia (Umbria), Naples and Lecce.

Each of the two parts is very interesting: the first has a greater "theoretical" interest; the second is more concentrated on the situations of the populations and the difficulties of the missionary tasks. The book, as a whole, is a good work of history which will be very useful for those who do research on this theme, and also, being filled with instructive references and suggestive figures, for missionaries who work in the Vincentian ministry of the popular missions today.

Jaime Corera, C.M.

Servir a los Pobres es ir a Dios

Published by Editorial Milagrosa, Madrid, Spain, 1999 (292 pages)

This book, which has for its title an expression of St. Vincent himself, collects 12 studies, revised and now edited in a definitive manner, which previously appeared in diverse publications of several branches of the Vincentian Family. The studies are 12 variations of a single, fundamental theme in Vincentian spirituality: to work for the poor is the way of St. Vincent to go to God. The studies are organized around three key ideas: 1) the poor as beneficiaries of our charism; 2) the Vincentian response and the spirituality which motivates it; 3) the Vincentian heritage, or the diverse groups of the said Vincentian Family, which strive today to actualize our charism and project it into the future.

Some chapters are particularly relevant given the interest shown in the Vincentian Family: "Share the Charism with the Laity"; "The Assistant of Lay Vincentian Movements"; "The Spirituality of the Vincentian Laity." This is a solid book for deepening the roots of the Vincentian charism and useful to those who make up the Vincentian Family, priests, consecrated persons, and laity.

Ronald Ramson, C.M.

Orando con Federico Ozanam

Compañeros de viaje

Published by Editorial Milagrosa, Madrid, Spain 1999 (122 pages)

Spanish translation by Alberto Román, C.M. of the original book, Praying with Frédéric Ozanam, published by Saint Mary Press, Winona, Minnesota, 1998. You will find a description of the book in Vincentiana 1998/1, p. 61. Fr. Ramson is the national chaplain of the St. Vincent de Paul Society in the United States.


En tiempos de San Vicente de Paúl... y hoy. II

Published by CEME, Apartado 353, Salamanca, Spain, 1999 (422 pages)

This second volume presents 33 new themes, translated from the "fiches vincentiennes," published over the years by the Province of Toulouse under the title, "Au temps de St. Vincent de Paul... et aujourd'hui." The themes are presented in their historical Vincentian roots and in the reality of the world and the Church. There are many pertinent quotations which illustrate each theme.

Copyright 2009 Congregation of the Mission