Yvonne Pratt-Johnson defines poverty of spirit as “the wretched condition of those whose pride and souls have been devastated by their material circumstances or living conditions.” Even people who are not materially poor can feel impoverished in spirit. She discusses her personal and professional Vincentian response to this problem, which is to help restore dignity to those who may have lost it. In her service to the elderly, she concentrates on being the kind of listener that Vincent de Paul was. As a teacher of English to immigrant parents, she treats her students as individuals and responds to them with respect and empathy. As a professor, Pratt-Johnson strives to instill the same values in her students, who are future teachers of English as a second language. She describes the various ways in which she makes them more sensitive to the immigrant experience and explains how Vincent de Paul influences and motivates her in this endeavor.
Pratt-Johnson, Yvonne Ed.D.
"Saint Vincent de Paul's Response to Poverty of Spirit,"
Vincentian Heritage Journal: Vol. 28:
2, Article 23.
Available at: https://via.library.depaul.edu/vhj/vol28/iss2/23