How much to you know about the founding members of SSVP … in particular, Paul Lamache? The President General, Brother Renato Lima de Oliviera, is gathering information on their history – and has turned to fellow Vincentians around the world to add to the knowledge.
2019 is the thematic year of Paul Lamache (1810-1892). In the first of what will become an annual Literary Contest, Vincentians are invited to present new or little known facts about the man’s personal, professional, Vincentian and family life. They can also focus on his contributions to the first Conference, and the expansion of the SSVP around the world.
The three best entries will receive cash prizes of 1000, 750 and 500 euros respectively. In addition, they’ll win a cash award to the same value for their Conferences, to further their Vincentian works.
Paul Lamache was one of the founding members of the SSVP. Born in the village of Saint Pierre-Eglise in Normandy, northern France, he was studying towards a Law degree at the Sorbonne, when he met his fellow SSVP founders.
Lamache married and had five children. His academic and personal life was very interesting. He served as a rector and professor, as well as being part of the National Guard during the French Revolution of 1848, for which he received the Cross of the Legion of Honour from the emperor. Lamache was the oldest surviving founding member. He died in Grenoble in 1832.
In an article in the French newspaper Le Monde, he described his role as a founding member of SSVP:
“To tell the truth, not one of us, not even Ozanam, could be described as the founder of the Society of St Vincent de Paul … It is God and God alone who has done all. that is exactly why we have every reason to hope that the Society of St Vincent de Paul will live.”
The International Year of Paul Lamache ends on 8 December 2019, when mass will be said around the world for the founding members of SSVP.