Founder’s Week, celebrated during the third or fourth week of September, offers the St. John’s community an opportunity to learn about the Congregation of the Mission and how the life and teachings of St. Vincent de Paul (1581–1660) influence the University. Through Founder’s Week, we honor Vincent, his spirit, and his legacy.
St. John’s established Founder’s Week in 1995. It was originally held in January to commemorate January 25, 1617, when Vincent preached a sermon at the Church of Folleville, France, and was inspired to form a congregation of priests and brothers to carry out missionary work with the poor in Paris. Today, January 25 is recognized as the date of the first sermon of the mission. In 1625, the first men began the work of this community, known as the Congregation of the Mission, or Vincentians.
In 1870, the priests and brothers of the Congregation of the Mission founded St. John’s University in Brooklyn, NY, at the request of the Right Rev. John Loughlin, bishop of the diocese. Since 2012, Founder’s Week has been held during the anniversary week of St. Vincent’s death on September 27, 1660.
Extend your mercy towards others, so that there can be no one in need whom you meet without helping.”
--St. Vincent de Paul