This morning FamVin posted  “What my Nonreligious Mom Taught Me About the Vincentian Mission #IamVincent” It is a longer piece than usual…  but it literally brought tears to my eyes.

Some excerpts to get a feel of this moving reflection…

When I was a young child, “religion” and “church” were foreign concepts to me. My family didn’t have a home parish nor a religious sect.


…Finally, during 4th grade, I asked my mom why my siblings and I hadn’t been raised with a certain religion. “Because your dad and I think that’s something you should get to choose for yourself,” she said.


A couple of weeks after my mom’s death, I found out that I was selected for the Vincentian Heritage Tour and would be embarking on a journey across the world. I had applied for the trip a couple of weeks before her death, and later realized that I had never even told her about the opportunity. Little did I know that this experience would be foundational in my journey to understanding the important lessons given to me by my mom. And little did she know that she had already instilled in me some of the most important values the Vincentian Mission has to offer.


…If the class about the Vincentian Mission inspired me, the Vincentian Heritage Tour to Paris blew me away.


Learning about something as inspiring as the Vincentian Mission in a college classroom in Chicago was a great experience, but traveling across the globe to the place where the Vincentian Mission was born and bred took that experience to a whole new level. The full immersion into the Mission within a culture I had never been exposed to was an experience I can’t begin to put into words.


…It wasn’t until our final class session on our last day in Paris that the connection between the loss of my mother and this Vincentian journey became evident. During this session, each person on the trip had the opportunity to openly reflect on their experience. Karl Nass, a staff member at DePaul who came along for the trip, repeated an idea given to us by Fr. Ed Udovic, our class instructor and Vincentian guide through Paris: “Mortal remains are connected to immortal memory.”


My hand flew to the pendant of the necklace I had worn every day on the trip without even thinking about it. This necklace quite literally contains the mortal remains of my mom in the form of her ashes (my sister and I think it’s just morbid enough that she would find this funny — she was certainly known for her sense of humor). I had habitually put the necklace on every morning in Paris, even though I had only worn it a handful of times before the trip. Memories of my mom came flooding back.


Very suddenly, a realization hit me: my mom, who had no idea what Vincentianism meant, had taught me everything I needed to know about living the Vincentian legacy in my own life.

Continue as DePaul University student Megan Scoville unpacks her story.