Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta


SVdP holds national assembly in Atlanta

Published August 7, 2014

ATLANTA—The 2014 National Assembly of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul will be held in Atlanta Sept. 24-27 with a theme of “Hope in Action.”

Host council for the National Assembly is St. Vincent de Paul Georgia, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year.

Louise Fisher Coniglio, director of volunteer and community engagement for SVdP Georgia, said that while the assembly program is geared toward Vincentians, the event is open to anyone who has a heart for helping others. One-day registrations and full registrations are still open.

To kick off the gathering, the Georgia council has organized a trip to the Atlanta Braves-Pittsburgh Pirates game on Wednesday, Sept. 24, at Turner Field where SVdP representatives will march around the field and signs will promote their work helping people in need achieve stability.

The assembly program will begin Thursday, Sept. 25, at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis, 265 Peachtree Center Ave., NE, and will include a retreat with Bishop John M. Quinn of the Diocese of Winona, Minnesota, episcopal advisor to the SVdP National Council.

Dr. Allen Hunt will present an opening address Thursday afternoon. A convert to Catholicism, Hunt was once pastor of a Methodist mega-church in Atlanta. He is an author and vice-president of the Dynamic Catholic Institute.

A range of practical workshops will follow.

The Celebration of Hope in Action Gala will be held Thursday evening from 6:30 to 10 p.m. at the new Center for Civil and Human Rights in downtown Atlanta.

Workshops will be offered on Friday, Sept. 26, to help Vincentians provide assistance for people in need. Workshop tracks include topics such as being a voice of the poor, advocacy, spirituality and collaboration.

Donna Beegle, who escaped poverty, is author of “See Poverty. Be the Difference.” Beegle will present Friday’s luncheon keynote presentation.

On Saturday, Sept. 27, participants will hear from Bill Bolling, founder and executive director of the Atlanta Community Food Bank since 1979. A panel discussion will also be held that day on the scriptural roots of social justice.

A special Vincentian youth gathering is also being held in conjunction with the assembly. High school and college-age students will hold a sleep out and candlelight vigil in honor of homeless youth and to experience what homelessness is like.

This year’s National Assembly not only marks the 100th anniversary of the National Assembly, but the 100th anniversary of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Georgia.

As one of the oldest and most successful charitable organizations in the world, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul is an organization of approximately 700,000 men and women throughout the world who volunteer to seek out and provide person-to-person aid to the poor and needy in 144 countries on five continents. It was established as a work of Catholic laymen in France in 1833. The founder is Blessed Frederic Ozanam.

Last year, St. Vincent de Paul provided more than $595 million in tangible and in-kind services nationally, served more than 14 million people in need, and logged more than 7 million volunteer hours.

For more information on the assembly or gala tickets, visit