25669_118365808174573_4853674_nMANILA, June 18, 2013— The Pontifical Mission Societies of the Philippines is seeking support and more promotion of one of its branches that helps in training future members of the clergy.

The Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle (POSPA), one of the four societies of the Pontifical Mission Societies (PMS) will be commemorated in the country on Sunday, June 30, a day after the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul.
Called St. Peter the Apostle Sunday, a special collection for the Solidarity Fund of the society will be held in all masses during the day.

PMS asks the faithful to support and help promote the works of POSPA in order to train more members of the clergy and religious to work in mission countries.

The Pontifical Society of St. Peter the Apostle (POSPA) was founded in 1895 by Ms. Jeanne Bigard and her mother Stephanie in Caen, France. They both believed that the effort of missionaries in mission lands will be useless unless there will be local priests who will continue their work, thus started a movement with the aim to support for the formation of local clergy in mission territories.

In 1920, POSPA came under the jurisdiction of Pontifical Society for the Propagation of the Faith by order of Pope Benedict XV. It was declared “pontifical” in 1922.

Activities of the society are primarily related to the formation of the local clergy with two main tasks which are 1) providing yearly subsidies to Major, Propaedeutic, and Minor Seminaries in the mission lands, in order to contribute to the maintenance of the formation of seminarians; and 2) constructing, enlarging and refurbishing these seminaries.

Aside from the two areas of support, a third important one concerns the formation of the local religious communities, as the society contributes financially in assisting first year male and female novices, or providing extraordinary subsidies in one single sum for the promotion of vocational activities or the maintenance of seminarians.

Currently, the society supports about 1,069 mission dioceses and funds the training of around 31,000 major seminarians and 11,000 novices around the world.

For more information on the June 30 event, one may contact PMS at (02) 731-3208/718-9518 or visit them at their office, 824 Don Quijote St., Sampaloc, Manila. (Jandel Posion)