India
Calcutta - Morning Star Major Seminary

 

The Morning Star seminary was founded in 1968 in the State of West Bengal, Calcutta, and it trains seminarians from various dioceses in the North of India.

On the occasion of its 40th anniversary, a project was started to build a new block to house a modern and well-equipped library that offers new and broader possibilities for study to the lay and religious students as well as to other visitors. In addition to significant local participation and the PSSPA's substantial contribution, the project was also carried out with the participation of various bodies such as Missio Aachen, Kirche in Not, and the German dioceses of Cologne, Rottenburg and Stuttgart.

Mexico
Tarahumara

The new philosophy seminary that is hoped to be built is located in the diocese of Tarahumara, a poor and mountainous region inhabited by an indigenous people, the Tarahumara, in the State of Chihuahua in the North of Mexico.

The diocese gives great importance to the Tarahumara people's culture and wants the seminarians to carry out the first stages of their formation in close contact with their people's cultural and religious traditions. The local population has already offered the land and is willing to contribute the necessary labor force. The PSSPA wants to be the main financial backer and is looking for other bodies that can collaborate.

Benin
Abomey - “Saint Paul de Djime” Philosophy Seminary

 

The “Saint Paul de Djime” Philosophy Seminary in the diocese of Abomey in Benin is an inter-diocesan national seminary with 152 seminarians (February 2014). A third year of philosophy will begin there in 2014-2015 to respond to the future priests' need for good academic formation. To accommodate the 65 new seminarians, construction has begun, with the PSSPA's help among others, of a three-story building to be completed in three successive stages.

Democratic Republic of the Congo
Kole - Saint Kizito Minor Seminary

 

In 2013, the Saint Kizito Minor seminary, in the diocese of Kole in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, received an extraordinary subsidy from the PSSPA for the construction of some new classrooms. In 2014, the seminary, which did not have a real place of prayer yet, was able to build a chapel, again with the PSSPA's help.

HISTORY

The Society of St. Peter the Apostle began in France (1889) following the suggestion of Bishop Cousin, the Apostolic Vicar of Nagasaki, Japan, Bishop Cousin, a missionary bishop, wanted to train indigenous priests who could proclaim the gospel and make the Church grow among their own people. For this, he needed to build and support seminaries in the “mission lands”. To carry out this project, Bishop Cousin turned to Jeanne Bigard and her mother Stephanie, a well-off family from Normandy.

 

When her father died, Jeanne sold all her possessions and earmarked them for the missions. With her mother she withdrew into a small, two-room apartment and dedicated herself entirely to organizing prayers and collecting funds for building Bishop Cousin's Japanese seminary. Her intense correspondence by letter with many missionaries present in different countries led her to want to get other groups of people involved in order to find economic and spiritual support for other missionary projects. It was from the organization of these groups of Catholic laypersons that an Association was born between 1889 and 1896 that would later become the Society of St. Peter the Apostle. In 1894, Jeanne Bigard printed its first Manifesto addressed to all Christians to encourage this aid to the development of the Catholic Missions. In 1896, the Society's Board of Directors met for the first time and the first propaganda pamphlet was printed.

 

The Society was founded officially in 1889 in the city of Caen in France. Its main offices were initially transferred to Paris in 1901, then to Fribourg in Switzerland, and since 1920 they have been in Rome.

 

With the Encyclical Letter Ad Extrema Orientis, Pope Leo XIII recommended the Society to the whole Church, and on May 3, 1922, Pius XI declared the Society of St. Peter the Apostle “Pontifical” together with the two preceding ones (Propagation of the Faith and Missionary Childhood).

MISSION - FAQ

The Society of St. Peter the Apostle promotes awareness in the Christian communities regarding the need to develop the local clergy and consecrated life in the recently founded missionary churches. It animates and coordinates missionary collaboration in all the local churches through the offering of prayers, sacrifices and money to support the formation of the future priests and the men and women religious of the young churches, and the necessary preparation of their formators.

It collects and distributes financial aid to support the seminaries and formation houses of the young men and women religious in collaboration with the local Christian communities and under the guidance of their pastors.

The Society of St. Peter the Apostle's economic collaboration is carried out through the Ordinary Subsidies for the support of the seminarians and the men and women novices; the Extraordinary Subsidies for building new seminaries and for the self-financing projects of the already existing ones; Scholarships and “Holy Mass Intentions” to support the formators and their programs of study.

 

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

 

What is the Pontifical Society of St Peter the Apostle (P.O.S.P.A.)? 

It is an Institution of the Universal Church founded to awaken the Christian people to the awareness of the needs of the formation of local clergy in the mission countries, and invite them to spiritually and materially collaborate to the preparation of candidates to priesthood and religious life.

 

How did P.O.S.P.A. come about?

It is the fruit of the missionary passion of Jeanne Bigard and her mother Stephanie, who at the end of the 19th century, laid the foundation for this Pontifical Society by calling the whole Church to focus on the irreplaceable role of the local clergy in the mission lands, and promoting their spiritual and material support.
Guided by the Holy Spirit, the Mission Society of St. Peter the Apostle quickly grew, with the support of the Holy See which granted the Society Pontifical status (May 3, 1922), so as to make its work more effective and give it a more universal character.

 

What does “Pontifical” mean?

“Pontifical” denotes an Institution which is at the service of the Holy Father and the College of Bishops. In light of his ministry of supreme Pastor of the Church, and in communion with all the Bishops of the world, the Holy Father has a global vision of the needs of each local church more than anybody else.
It is his duty to call the other Pastors to their universal missionary responsibility and invite them to participate in a common effort, among themselves and together with him, for the evangelization of the world. The Holy Father exercises his authority over the Pontifical Mission Societies through the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

 

Which kind of concrete help is offered by P.O.S.P.A.?

P.O.S.P.A’s financial help is provided in ordinary subsidies and extraordinary subsidies. Ordinary subsidies are provided for the normal upkeep of the seminaries and granted every year according to the number of seminarians enrolled at the seminary.
Extraordinary subsidies are provided for the construction of new seminary buildings, refurbishing projects, enlargements, or other  special needs of the seminary.

 

How are P.O.S.P.A.’s funds collected and distributed?

The Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle has constituted a Worldwide Solidarity Fund which is fed by the yearly offerings sent by Christian communities from 120 countries. In addition those local churches who are the main beneficiaries of this Fund also contribute regularly to it. Their spirit is the same as the one which inspired the first Christian communities: “They sold their good and possessions and distributed the proceeds among themselves according to what each one needed” (Acts 2,45).
This Fund embodies a deep Catholic sense of ecclesial communion. It responds to the needs of all mission churches, particularly those more recently formed or located in the poorest countries.
All the requests for financial contribution are received by the International Secretariat of the Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle, in Rome, and subdivided according to different continents and different countries. They are first examined in order to verify that the necessary objective requirements are fulfilled;  they must be approved by the ecclesial local authority. A proposal for assigning the subsidies to each seminary is then drafted and examined by National Directors of the Pontifical Mission Societies during their General Assembly, taking place in Rome every year in May under the patronage of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. The Directors are called to finally approve the proposal for the assignment of the subsidies, that are then sent to the seminaries via the Apostolic Nunciatures.

 

Who presents the requests for help?

The Rectors present their requests on behalf of the Major and Propaedeutic Seminaries. The Bishop or the Rector does it on behalf of the Minor Seminaries. Requests for help for the maintenance of the seminary (ordinary subsidies) must be sent by using a specific form by January 31 of each year.
Requests for constructions, enlargements, refurbishing, and any other need of the seminary (extraordinary subsidies) are equally expected to be presented by using a specific form by January 31. All the requests must be sent through the local Apostolic Nunciature.

 

Does P.O.S.P.A. financially assist also Religious Congregations?

While P.O.S.P.A.’s primary task is the formation of the local clergy, subsidies are also provided for both male and female novices in their first canonical year, in novitiates situated in Mission countries.
These requests are presented by the Superior of the Congregation to the local Conference of the Major Superiors, who send them to our International Secretariat in Rome through the Apostolic Nunciature. All the requests on behalf of Novitiates must be received by P.O.S.P.A. by July 31.

 

Can P.O.S.P.A. financially support the university formation of priests?

Regarding university formation of the local clergy, P.O.S.P.A. contributes by providing scholarships for specialization courses, which can be taken in higher learning Institutes located in Africa.
The priests from mission countries, attending the Roman Universities, and living in the missionary Colleges of the Pontifical Foundation Domus Missionalis (St. Peter the Apostle College, St. Paul College, St. Joseph College), are subsidised from the fund of the World Mission Sunday, managed by the Pontifical Mission Society of the Propagation of the Faith.
The Bishops who wish to present their candidates to these colleges must present their request to the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples, by December 31.

 

Can P. O.S.P.A. financially support also religious women with their higher education?

The same fund of the World Mission Sunday subsidises the College Mater Ecclesiae, of the Domus Missionalis, in Castel Gandolfo, which receives religious sisters from the mission countries.

The Superiors of the Congregations who wish to have some of their sisters study in Rome can send their request to the Directress of this College, always through the Apostolic Nunciature. The deadline for sending in the requests is the same as the one mentioned above for priests' applications, i.e., December 31.

 

Can P.O.S.P.A. intervene also in emergency situations?

P.O.S.P.A.”s interventions are part of a planned and regular of cooperation that, however, does not exclude financial assistance towards particular and unexpected needs in its specific area of service.

 

How can someone contribute and support P.O.S.P.A.?

Witnessing a life lived according to the Gospel, offering sacrifices and daily prayer, and making concrete commitments, within your own local community, for an increase of vocations to the priesthood, religious and missionary  life are certainly the primary way through which the strength of P.O.S.P.A. can be expressed.
Since all those who are baptized are called to cooperate with the universal mission of the church, P.O.S.P.A. addresses all the people of God: families, local communities, parishes, schools, movements and associations, church groups, bishops, priests, religious, and lay faithful.
Equally important are economic contributions freely offered according to individual means and availability. Offerings, legacies, etc.,  can be sent to the National direction of the Pontifical Mission Societies (Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle) present in every country all over the world.

 

Who can provide further information about P.O.S.P.A.?

Please refer directly to P.O.S.P.A.’s Secretary General, Fr. Fernando Domingues mccj.

International Secretariat of the Pontifical Society of St Peter the Apostle
Via di Propaganda 1/c
00187 ROMA.
Tel: 06/69 88 02 28 Fax: 06/69 88 01 08

E-mail: bigard@ppoomm.va

Web Site: www.ppoomm.va

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PONTIFICAL SOCIETY OF SAINT PETER THE APOSTLE
...collaborates in the growth of the young churches
for building new seminaries and formation
the new local priests, religious and sisters
PONTIFICAL SOCIETY OF SAINT PETER THE APOSTLE
...collaborates in the growth of the young churches
for building new seminaries and formation
the new local priests, religious and sisters
PONTIFICAL SOCIETY OF SAINT PETER THE APOSTLE
...collaborates in the growth of the young churches
for building new seminaries and formation
the new local priests, religious and sisters
PONTIFICAL SOCIETY OF SAINT PETER THE APOSTLE
...collaborates in the growth of the young churches
for building new seminaries and formation
the new local priests, religious and sisters
PONTIFICAL SOCIETY OF SAINT PETER THE APOSTLE
...collaborates in the growth of the young churches
for building new seminaries and formation
the new local priests, religious and sisters
HISTORY
The Society of St. Peter the Apostle began in France (1889) following the suggestion of Bishop Cousin, the Apostolic Vicar of Nagasaki, Japan, Bishop Cousin, a missionary bishop, wanted to train indigenous priests who could proclaim the gospel and make the Church grow among their own people. For this, he needed to build and support seminaries in the “mission lands”. To carry out this project, Bishop Cousin turned to Jeanne Bigard and her mother Stephanie, a well-off family from Normandy.
 
When her father died, Jeanne sold all her possessions and earmarked them for the missions. With her mother she withdrew into a small, two-room apartment and dedicated herself entirely to organizing prayers and collecting funds for building Bishop Cousin's Japanese s...

MISSION - FAQ
The Society of St. Peter the Apostle promotes awareness in the Christian communities regarding the need to develop the local clergy and consecrated life in the recently founded missionary churches. It animates and coordinates missionary collaboration in all the local churches through the offering of prayers, sacrifices and money to support the formation of the future priests and the men and women religious of the young churches, and the necessary preparation of their formators.
It collects and distributes financial aid to support the seminaries and formation houses of the young men and women religious in collaboration with the local Christian communities and under the guidance of their pastors.
The Society of St. Peter the Apostle's economic collaboration is carried out through the ...



Projects
Democratic Republic of the Congo





PONTIFICAL SOCIETY OF SAINT PETER THE APOSTLE
International Secretariat
Via di Propaganda, 1C 00187 ROMA
Telephone: (0039)06 698 80228 Fax: (0039)06 698 80276 Email: bigard@pospa.va


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