Peter Julian Eymard was born in 1811 in La Mure d’Isère, in the South-East of France, near the city of Grenoble. He first joined the diocesan clergy of Grenoble and, after a short period of pastoral experience as a young priest, left the diocese for the newly founded Congregation of the Marists, where he committed himself to tasks of education, preaching and administration.
The intense accompaniment of a group of lay-associates led him to the discovery of the Eucharist as an answer to the needs of his time and to his own role as the Founder of a new Congregation, exclusively dedicated to this sacrament. The process of his spiritual growth led him to a vision of the Eucharist as Christ’s gift of self out of love for us, waiting for our response of love to him and to our fellow human beings.
The social dimension of the Eucharist is founded here, which found its concrete expression in Eymard’s commitment to improving the basic human situation of poor working-class people in Paris, while preparing them for first communion.
During the last years of his life he was engaged in an intense preaching activity, apart from leading the first steps of his young Congregation. He published little, but had an enormous correspondence with people of all kinds, to whom he was a spiritual guide and father. He left us an impressive quantity of personal notes and reflections, a precious witness to his untiring search into the depth of the Eucharistic mystery. He died exhausted by his many activities in 1868 in La Mure where he was born. He was beatified by Pope Pius XI in 1925 and canonized by Pope John XXIII in 1962, at the end of the first session of the Second Vatican Council. Pope John Paul II put his feast on the universal liturgical calendar in 1995. Saint Peter Julian Eymard, the Apostle of the Eucharist, is celebrated on the 2nd of August.
The Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament, a religious Congregation within the Roman-Catholic Church, was founded in 1856 in Paris by Saint Pierre-Julien Eymard. It is an apostolic Congregation of Pontifical right, composed of priests, deacons and lay-brothers, with representatives in 29 countries in 5 continents. It is structured into Provinces and Regions and a central government, the General Council, which is based in Rome. Every six years a General Assembly, the General Chapter, which is the highest authority in the Congregation, is held. It takes the necessary decisions to foster its mission and electsthe General Superior and the members of his Council. The Congregation follows a Rule of Life, which was approved by the Holy See in 1984. The total number of its members is around 868. The official name of the Congregation is Congregatio Sanctissimi Sacramenti and the members put the abbreviation SSS behind their name.
The Superior General
The Superior General is the highest authority in the Institute after the General Chapter and is president of the General Council. He is elected by the General Chapter for a term of six years. The Superior General exercises his authority at the service of the congregation’s unity and its mission in the world in conformity with the norms of the Rule of Life. In union with his council, he animates and coordinates the life and mission of the Institute. (SSS RoL #73, 74)
November 24, 2023 ~ "After the unanimous approval of the closure of the Chapter, held in Thu Duc Vietnam, the assembly listened to the final message of Fr. Benzy Philip Romician, the Superior General. He expressed his heartfelt gratitude to each and everyone for their contribution to this Cenacle experience which is the Chapter, and particularly the former General Superior, whom he thanked with a traditional shawl. After he named Fr. Anaclet Bambala as his General Vicar, Fr, General officially closed the 36th SSS General Chapter, and as a response, the whole assembly sang 'Together, Together', more passionately now, for the last time."
General Council / Consultors
At least four general consultors are elected by the general chapter for a term of six years. With the Superior General, they constitute the ordinary and permanent body of the General Council which collaborates with the various bodies of the Institute in keeping it in a state of constant renewa and adaptation.
The General Consultors, at the service of the mission of the Congregation, assist the Superior General and participates with him in the overall government of the Congregation. (RL 72, 75)In the exercise of their roles, they also take charge of the mission of the Congregation in particular geographic areas (and/or language group/s) and distinct commissions.
S.S.S. General Council
September 28, 2020
Following in the footsteps of Father Eymard, our mission is to respond to the hungers ofhuman family with the riches of God's love in the Eucharist.
Province and Region
1. Province Beato Juan XXIII: Colombia ~ Porto Rico ~ Peru
2. Province Madonna del SSmo Sacramento: Italy ~ Spain
3. Province Notre Dame d’Afrique: Senegal
4. Region Cardinal Émile Biayenda: Congo
5. Province Kristu Jyoti: India
6. Province Saints Peter and Paul: Great Britain ~ Ireland
7. Province Vietnamese Martyrs: Vietnam
8. Province Bienheureux Isidore Bakanja: RD Congo
9. Province Nossa Senhora de Guadalupe: Argentina ~ Brazil ~ Chile
10. Province Saint Ann: U.S.A. ~ 2022 Chapter ~ August 8 -12
11. Province St. Pierre-Julien Eymard: Holland ~ Germany ~ Belgium ~
Mozambique ~ France ~ Switzerland
12. Province Christ Bread of Life: Sri Lanka
13. Province Holy Spirit: Australia
14. Province Our Lady of the Assumption: Philippines ~ USA ~Uganda
15. Province Saint Jean Baptiste: Canada
SERVANTS OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT
WHO ARE WE?
We are a congregation founded 155 years ago (May 25, 1858) in Paris, France, by St. Peter Julian Eymard, theApostle of the Eucharist, with the cooperation of Mother Marguerite Guillot (1815-1885), who became the first Superior General.
The foundation took place two years after that of the Fathers of the Blessed Sacrament. In 1864, the Congregation was erected in Angers and on July 21, 1871 received approval by Pope Pius IX. We form a Religious Community committed to realizing the ideal of the Founder: to love, to worship, to announce Risen Christ to the world, present and revealed in the Eucharist. We live
guided by the protection of Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament, our Patron and our Mother and Model.
The Servants of the Blessed Sacrament share the same charism as the Religious of the Blessed Sacrament. Hardly had he started his first community in Paris than Father Eymard dreamt of the female branch. He guided Marguerite Guillot towards the way he knew she was called. On May 25th, 1858, together with her sister Claudine and Mrs. Richerd, she discretely entered under Father Eymard’s tutelage at rue du Faubourg Saint-Jacques in Paris. OnJuly 31st 1859 the first “Servants” pronounced their private vows. Finally, on May 26th, 1864 they received thcanonical recognition from Monsignor Angebault, bishop of Angers. Around 600 conferences given by Father Eymard to the Servants, now accessible in the Internet Online edition of his writings, indicate his singular solicitude for his daughters.
After Father’s death, Mother Marguerite was in charge of looking after the formation and animation of the Angers community, which did not cease growing. She saw to the improvement of the Constitutions written by the Father and presented them for a first approval in 1875. Then, ten years later, she received the definitive approval from the Holy See.
Shortly afterward, on July 7th, 1885, after completing her task as a faithful servant, she gave her soul to God. In the 1900, the Paris community which was established in 1876 at no. 14 Rue Leclerc, occupies a new convent and chapel at no. 16 Rue Cortambert. Then there were the expansions abroad: in Canada in 1903, in Brazil in 1912, in the United States in 1947, in Australia in 1950, then in Italy, the Netherlands, in the Philippines, and finally more recently in Vietnam where more than a hundred nuns are engaged in a special way to serve the handicapped and the poor.
The Servants’ way of life has changed, but the ideal that Father Eymard entrusted to Marguerite Guillot remains:
Sisters in the Service of the Eucharist
To form true women adorers of Jesus-Eucharistic following the model of Our Lady of the Cenacle, adoring and living near the divine Tabernacle.
(20 September 1856).