The Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle

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stephaniebigardIn 1889, mother and daughter — Stephanie and Jeanne Bigard — answered a desperate plea for help from the mission. The French missionary bishop of Nagazaki, Japan wrote to the two women asking for help to keep his seminary open because he had run out of the funds necessary to help educate these young men to serve their people as priests. The bishop just did not have the funds to train these young Japanese men whom, he judged, would make excellent priests. The Bigards came to his assistance and started a small group for this purpose in their native Caen, France. From these humble beginnings emerged the Society of St. Peter Apostle.

Within five years of sending their first donation to Japan, the Bigards, and those whom they enlisted to help, were sending funds to seminaries in India, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Korea and China. The goal of the Society of St. Peter then and now has been to invite individuals to support the education of candidates for the Catholic priesthood in the developing world and to support the formation of men and women candidates for the Religious life in the mission. In its first year, the Society of St. Peter Apostle sent help for some 2,700 seminarians in the mission. Today, some 30,000 major seminarians, mostly in Africa and Asia, receive an annual subsidy from the Society.

In the Philippines the Sunday nearest to the feast of St. Peter and St. Paul in June is allotted as St. Peter the Apostle Sunday.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle

  1. What is the Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle or POSPA?

Founded by Ms. Jeanne Bigard and her mother Stephanie in 1895 in Caen, France, the Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle or POSPA is one of the Pontifical organizations under the Pontifical Mission Societies entrusted with the responsibility to support for the formation of local clergy and religious in mission dioceses – the young churches.

  1. What are the activities of the Society?

The activities of POSPA are primarily related to the support of the formation of the local clergy in mission dioceses – young Churches. Every year the Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle is financing about 1,000 mission dioceses specifically for the training and formation of seminarians and construction of seminaries.

  1. What special activity is done on this special day?

The St. Peter the Apostle Sunday will be celebrated on July 2, 2017. There will be a special collection in all masses on this special day and the money we collect will go to the Solidarity Fund of the Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle which will then be used in the aforementioned activities.

  1. How much were the available funds for distribution of POSPA in the Philippines the previous year? And where did the available funds go?

In the previous year the available funds of the Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle in the Philippines were US$ 100,461.23. They were distributed to the following:

            Philippines

            San Pablo Major Seminary, Diocese of Baguio $ 60,595.00

            St. Augustine Major Seminary of Philosophy, Vicariate of Calapan $ 35,000.00

            Sri Lanka

            St. Joseph Minor Seminary, Diocese of Batticaloa $ 4,000.00

            St. Joseph Minor Seminary, Diocese of Tricomalee $ 866.23

  1. How can we support the works of the Society?

We can support the works of the Society by helping spread and promote its works and activities.

 

 

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