Society of St Vincent De Paul members at the training session at Agape Village.Society of St Vincent De Paul members at the training session at Agape Village.

It was an enlightening day for Society of St Vincent De Paul (SSVP) members as 95 of them from different parishes learned how to better understand and help their beneficiaries or Friends In Need (FINs).

The one-day training session, titled Dissecting a FIN’s DNA – A Social Perspective, was held at Agape Village on Jan 23.

The session opened with a short reflection on mercy taken from Pope Francis’ Evangelii Gaudium, the 2013 apostolic exhortation on the Church’s primary mission of evangelisation in the modern world.

This was followed by a personality test that allowed members to better identify the way they approach interaction by identifying their strengths and weaknesses.

Mr James Tay, president of Church of the Immaculate Heart of Mary’s SSVP conference, said he found it “very useful as it provided each of us with an understanding of our personality type.

Other sessions included an insight into the perspective of a Friend-in-Need such as the environment and other ecological factors that affect them.

At the end of the day, Vincentians left with a fresh perspective on dealing with their FINs.

Ms Christina Choo, member of the SSVP conference in the Church of St Ignatius, shared that she “found the reminder to think about whether your help is toxic or transformative most useful”.

Ms Adelaine Ng, treasurer of the SSVP conference in the Church of Sts Peter and Paul, said: “What I like most about the training session is that I get to hear from professionals... who shared with us their field experiences.”

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