Mr Peter Yee seen here with his 50th anniversary award for service to the Society of St Vincent de Paul.

Members of the Society of St Vincent de Paul (SSVP) celebrated their patron’s feast day at the Church of St Francis of Assisi on Sept 27.

Archbishop William Goh, in his homily, reflected on the life of St Vincent de Paul who worked tirelessly in collaboration with others.

Archbishop Goh preached that the secret to St Vincent de Paul’s exemplary conduct towards the poor was his prayer life, focusing on the humanity of Jesus.

By putting on the mind of Jesus in the Gospel, such as when He was among the poor, the lepers, the sick and the possessed, St Vincent de Paul developed the same heart of Jesus for the
needy.

Vincentians are therefore called to pray and contemplate on the humanity of Jesus, so that they possess the heart of Jesus when in service to the poor.

Archbishop Goh went on to emphasise that the Vincentian work of evangelisation requires that they be true disciples of the Lord. This involves developing virtues like discipline, perseverance, humility, empathy and detachment.

At the Mass, 47 new Vincentians took their pledges and were inducted into the society, along with 12 members who received their 25th anniversary awards.

Three other Vincentians received their 50th anniversary awards. They are Mr Michael Thio, Mr Peter Yee and Mr Lucas Williams.

Mr Peter Yee shared that “when I was young, I grew up in Geylang and I noticed there were a lot of people who were worse off than me. All they had on their dining table were just peanuts, salted vegetables and porridge.

“Although my family was not well to do, we had better food than them. So I told myself when I grow up, I needed to do something for the poor. And that was how I ended up joining SSVP immediately after I got
baptised.”

He added that he feels “very satisfied every time I see the children of our Friends-in-Need grow up, go out to work, and get married.”

Mr Michael Thio shared that the poor “taught me many things in life, especially to be humble, simple and to accept life as it is, don’t expect too much.”

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