Roman Catholic 
Diocese of Ogdensburg

St. Peter Apostle

Dear People of Ogdensburg,

Mercy at work. Have you ever felt in great need of the loving presence of God in your life, wanted to experience His mercy and His love? There are seminaries across Africa and Asia helping to prepare future priests who will carry the Lord’s loving, merciful heart to uplift the poor, to reach out to children, and to comfort the sick. These future priests need your help.

“We visit the sick and share the word of God with them,” says Phiri Zakariah Moses, studying at St. Dominic’s Major Seminary in Zambia. Like his fellow seminarians, he needs help to pay tuition costs, and St. Dominic’s wants to expand to accept more students. “St. Luke tells us, ‘Whoever has two cloaks should share with those who have none, and whoever has food should do likewise,” Phiri says. “I pray that you will do the same, helping us to help others.

”In Timor-Leste in Asia, a student, Nato, at San Pedro e Paulo Major Seminary in Dili, longs to bring help to his people there. Timor-Leste, one of the poorest countries in the world, is torn by war, violence and is where Nato’s family became refugees. “I feel compassion for my people, I know their pain and suffering,” he says. “We still have a vision of hope. I work to confirm this hope in them and realize our vision with our faith in God.”

Mercy at work. These lived stories make various aspects of life in developing countries come alive.  These are the people whose lives you touch by your prayers and sacrifices in support of missionary efforts. Your support to the Society for the Propagation of the Faith/Society of St. Peter the Apostle brings concrete help and builds sustaining hope.  While the cost of training is yearly $700 whatever amount you can sacrifice will be treasured. They will be remembering you in prayer and you will be connected to their Mercy at work. God bless you and yours!                                     

Gratefully in the Lord Jesus,

Sister Mary Ellen Brett, SSJ
Diocesan Director

A Love for Brotherhood and Teaching

Below is an outtake from the monthly periodical by the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart called
“A New Heart for a New World” in March of this year.
By Brother Warren Perrotto, MSC.

As a MSC Brother for 49 years and teacher for over 30 years, my goal in life is to be the Heart of God in the world and accompany the students in both happy and sad moments, including cheering in their victories as well as becoming a Simon of Cyrene to help them carry their heavy burdens and cresses.  Like the “meek and humble heart” of Jesus, I strive to make their yoke and burden easier so that Christ may increase in their lives.

This impact comes across clearly from the many former students I have on Facebook and the comments written in my yearbooks as well as the personal notes. I enjoy staying connected with my students offering our MSC spirituality and charism through theological concerns and social issues.

I am especially grateful for the wonderful experiences teaching English in Colombia, South America for the past several months.  I am having a great time getting to know my students in the classroom, as well as during field trips or during the many extra-curricular activities they invite me to.  Other than teaching English, I have also taught various theological, business and Spanish course as well as MSC Lay formation.

Working with Life’s Healing Journey, writing articles for the JPIC (Justice Peace and Integrity of Creation) E-publication, and staying connected with our alumni also has helped place an impact on people’s lives to make know the vocation of the MSC Brother and the love for the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

When asked about Brother Warren, Sister Cecelia Marie Hermann stated that Brother Warren is a former member of the Faculty of the Immaculate Heart Central High School (IHC) in Watertown, NY.   Sister Cecelia, current Vice Principal at IHC, shared some memories of Brother Warren’s time at IHC.

“Brother Warren was already teaching at IHC in Watertown when I arrived there.  He was a teacher of both Religion and Psychology.   I have several memories of Brother Warren.  First and foremost, he loved his vocation as a Missionary of the Sacred Heart Religious brother.  He was always very happy to remind us each year of the anniversary of his Religious vows on Saint Joseph’s Day.”

“Brother loved his students.  He was present at many of the student activities such as ball games, dances, variety shows to name a few.  We had great fun writing the scripts of the variety shows and practicing with the students.”

“Brother Warren was very helpful to me when I came to IHC on many occasions.  I was pleased to see Brother honored by his Missionaries of the Sacred Heart Community this year. On a personal note, I was happy to read about Brother Warren.  It’s a joy to read about his enthusiasm for his missionary endeavors whether he’s serving in our country or in the developing lands. “

Please remember the Society for the Propagation when writing or updating your will.

About St. Peter Apostle and FAQ

St. Peter Apostle - Vocations and the Missions

The Society of St. Peter the Apostle was founded in Cain, France in 1889 by two laywomen Jeanne Bigard and her Mother Stephanie. These women overcame personal tragedies in their lives and dedicated themselves to working for the missions. In 1888 the Bigards were approached by a French missionary working in Kyoto, Japan who asked for their assistance to build a Church. They sold some of their possessions and raised enough funds to complete the building of the Church. A year later the Bishop of Nagasaki turned to them for assistance and support of his seminarians. The St. Peter the Apostle Society was born – a society that supported and promoted the formation of local clergy in the Missions.The Bigards traveled throughout France promoting the work of the society. In 1922 Pope Pius XI placed it under papal patronage and gave it the task of supporting seminaries in mission dioceses – the young churches.

Frequently asked questions on SPA and impact on vocations in the mission lands.I hear that vocations are growing in the Missions. How many seminarians does the Society of St. Peter Apostle support?

Currently, more than 30,000 major seminarians in some 400 seminaries receive help from St. Peter Apostle. In addition, close to 10,000 men and women Religious novices receive assistance.

How can I help the Society of St. Peter Apostle?

You can offer your prayers and personal sacrifices for the growth of mission vocations. You can also help young men as they prepare for the priesthood through the Society of St. Peter Apostle with a donation of $700 for a year of studies. A gift of $300 will help toward the formation of men and women novices preparing for a life of service as Religious Brothers and Sisters. You may also want to remember the Society of St. Peter Apostle when writing or changing your Will.

Why does it cost more to educate a seminarian than a Religious novice?

Seminarians typically spend a greater length of time studying for the priesthood than a religous brother or sister would spend in a spiritual formation program. A greater length of study requires a seminary to provide additional textbooks, classroom supplies as well as room and board for that period of time.

Once ordained, where do these priests serve?

Very often, priests ordained in the Missions will serve in the very dioceses where they were born and raised. Others are asked by the ordinary (bishop) of their dioceses to serve in other areas of their native countries or in other dioceses throughout the world — even in the United States.

May I sponsor an individual seminarian or novice through the Society of St. Peter Apostle?

Contributions to the Society of St. Peter Apostle are allocated to seminaries and seminarians in mission dioceses throughout the world according to need, with certain help offered to each seminary by the number of students there. This system of allocating funds helps ensure that aid is distributed fairly and that those who are most desperately in need receive enough support.

A Prayer for Mission Vocations

God our Father,

You will all men and women to be saved and come to the knowledge of Your Truth.
Send workers into Your great harvest that the Gospel may be preached to every creature and Your people,
Gathered together by the Word of Life and strengthened by the power of the Sacraments,
May advance in the way of salvation and love.
I ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You
And the Holy Spirit, One God for ever and ever.

Amen