THE PONTIFICAL MISSION SOCIETIES
Frequently Asked Questions
What are Pontifical Mission Societies?
The Pontifical Mission Societies or PMS is not a religious congregation but an office under the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples with the primary task of promoting mission awareness, encouraging missionary cooperation and solidarity, and fostering vocation for mission ad gentes among the people of God.
While our official name is Pontifical Mission Societies, other national offices adopt other names, like, MISSIO, Catholic Mission, etc. for practical reason and as the situation demands it.
How can the PMS possibly do this task and responsibility?
In a concrete way this will be possible through the four Pontifical Societies, namely: Society for Propagation of the Faith, Society of Saint Peter the Apostle, Society of the Holy Childhood and Missionary Union.
How does PMS work in the diocesan structure of the Church?
In the diocesan structure we normally have an office that coordinates with the Episcopal Commission on Mission which some call it the Episcopal Delegate for missions or Commission on Mission. This office may be theoretically distinct from the PMS office but in practice must work closely with each other because both are geared towards the same goal. As a matter of fact bishops normally entrust to the one person the position of Episcopal Delegate for the missions or Commission on Mission and Diocesan Director of PMS. It is because the nature of their work is closely related with each other and thus doing so would provide a more effective way of fulfilling their tasks and responsibilities. However, if, for serious reasons, a Bishop should choose two distinct persons for the two offices, the Episcopal Delegate will have to offer all possible support to the Diocesan Director, so that the PMS may truly be the privileged means of missionary animation and cooperation in the diocese.
- Where can we find the Pontifical Mission Societies?
The PMS can be found in 130 countries throughout the world. In the Philippines, we are located at: 824 Don Quijote St., Sampaloc, Manila 1015, Philippines.
When did the PMS start in the Philippines?
The PMS started to operate in the Philippines in 1932 when then Manila Archbishop Michael J. P’Doherty appointed Fr. Jose Maria Siguion, SJ as its first national director.
How can I help in the universal mission of the Church?
As baptized Catholics we are all called to participate in the worldwide mission of the Church and you can do your share in this mission by offering prayers, personal sacrifices or financial contributions. In concrete, you can channel your help either through the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, the Missionary Society of the Holy Childhood or the Society for St. Peter Apostle. The Missionary Union of Priests and Religious is a spiritual apostolate for Priests, Religious men and women, catechists and lay people.
What is World Mission Sunday?
World Mission Sunday is a day set aside for Catholics worldwide to recommit themselves to the Church’s missionary activity through prayer, sacrifice and material offerings. Annually, World Mission Sunday is celebrated on second to the last Sunday in October.
What is the Universal Solidarity Fund?
The Universal Solidarity Fund is defined as the sum total of contributions received throughout the world in support of the missionary needs of the Church Universal which is necessary for three reasons:
- as a basic means of support for a new or young Church;
- as a form of support for a Church in a mission dependent area where self-support is not well established;
- as a form of support to a Church in a mission dependent area where an emergency has occurred.
Of the four Societies only three (Propagation of Faith, Holy Childhood and St. Peter Apostle) have their respective Universal Solidarity Fund. In the Philippines we allotted special collections for these three funds, namely:
- the Sunday before the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul the Apostles in June for the Society of St. Peter the Apostle;
- the World Mission Sunday in October for the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, and;
- the Feast of the Sto. Niño every third Sunday of January for the Society of the Holy Childhood.