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Abstract

Vincent de Paul collaborated with women from the beginning of his ministry. Madame de Gondi was the one who urged Vincent to preach at Folleville, chose the subject of his sermon, and asked him to give missions on her lands. She was also instrumental in the founding of the Confraternities of Charity and the Congregation. Louise de Marillac was Vincent’s friend and collaborator in many works, especially in the establishment of the Daughters of Charity. She was responsible for the Daughters’ spiritual formation. Marguerite Naseau showed Vincent the potential that peasant women had for charity; before he met her, he was focused on leading only wealthy women in that cause. It is worth noting that many of the Daughters were peasants who would have been excluded from religious life. Vincent added a revolutionary dimension to women’s works of charity: spiritual ministry, which had previously been confined to the clergy.

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