Rome, 3 February 2016
To all the Priests and Brothers of the Congregation of the Mission
May the grace and peace of Our Lord Jesus Christ fill your heart now and forever!
Gregory Gay CM Some time ago, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments asked us to review the Vincentian Liturgical Calendar according to the new norms. The Procurator General, Father Shijo Kanjirathamkunnel, undertook this task and presented the list to the said Congregation. It was then requested that we consider changing the feast of Saint Louise de Marillac, because it always falls during Lent and it is preferable not to celebrate solemnities during that particular liturgical season.
Together with the Superioress General, Sister Kathleen Appler, and her Council, I and my Council searched for an appropriate date. We agreed on 9 May, the anniversary of Saint Louise’s beatification, because the anniversary of her canonization also falls during Lent. On 14 December 2015, Father Shijo presented the request for a change of date to the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments which issued a decree, dated 4 January 2016, consenting to our request. The celebration of Saint Louise’s feast remains a solemnity and, effective immediately, will be celebrated each year on 9 May.
In addition, we have requested that her feast be inserted into the Church’s universal calendar. We do not yet have a response to that request.
As we close this Year of Consecrated Life and continue in the Jubilee Year of Mercy, may we each draw strength from the many graces these special times afford us. God bless.
Your brother in Saint Vincent,
G. Gregory Gay, CM