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The VINCENTIAN SECULAR INSTITUTE ALMA consisting of lay people, men and women, who consecrate themselves completely to Christ and the Kingdom of God , continues the aims of Vincentius, the Vincentian Family, and Communities consecrated to the togetherness with the poor, rejected and disabled .They service through the "Mission" through "Togetherness communities " and through " Charity groups ". With and through these groups the members serve the poor.

The Vincentian Secular Institute A.L.M.A ( acronym for " Asossiasi Lembaga Misionaris Awam" ,which means Association of Lay Missionaries for the poor and the disabled) was born on 27 September 1960, the 300th anniversary of the death of St. Vincent de Paul,in Madiun, Indonesia and officially recognized as Secular Institute under the jurisdiction of the Bishop of Malang in 1967. St. Vincent is their patron Saint.

Its life style and rules are based on the togetherness with the disabled and its the members try to profess the same spirit as the Vincentians and Daughters of Charity.

Seeing that there are already many congregations and lay organizations following the steps of St.Vincent, it intends in this century, wherein secular institutes with their significance for the Kingdom of God in modern times were recognized by the church, to follow the ideals of St.Vincent as a Secular Institute for the poor unreached disabled. It has now 240 members in communities spread over the whole of Indonesia. East-Java, Central Java,Jogyakartra , Jakarta, West Java, Flores, Timor, Sumba,Kalimantan, the Molucca islands and Irian Barat.

The members go to the villages or to slum areas, live together with the poor and the disabled. Their task is to help and to empower the abandoned poor disabled .Through Community Based Rehabilitation they change the mentality of the community towards the disabled and they look for all the unreached disabled in the community.They work through community groups,evangelization groups and charity groups existing there. If these basic groups are not existing they try to start and develop them and to ensure in this way the realization of the Gospel in the service of the poor unreached by the existing structures. They live together with the most severely disabled.

As lay men and women, working with their own hands, they consecrate themselves to the service of the unreached poor, the abandoned, the disabled in the togetherness and in the community with the poor.

1.They live together with the disabled in the same house,the same room 2.They abstains completely from running schools or hospitals, 3.They work through basic communities or movements for the poor, Conferences of St.Vicent de Paul Society, Legion of Mary, for the development of the faith and the development of charity together with the local community. They work together with or develop

" Evangelization groups ( Klompok Evangelisasi), Basic Christian Communities for the poor. Community Groups for disabled ((Faith and Light) KUBE (small income generating groups for the poor) Community Based Rehabilitation groups ) Groups and associations of disabled. BHAKTI LUHUR (CONSECRATION TO CHARITY)

They train young people who consecrate 7 years of their youth to assist them in this work for the poor disabled. These young people are called "Putri Bhakti Luhur " or" Putra Bhakti Luhur". After being trained during three years they start working for the disabled poor in one of the more than 140 homes of the ALMA and Bhakti Luhur in Indonesia.

There are now about 740 men and women directly serving the poor. After having worked four years for the poor they consecrate them selves as servants of the poor for their whole life in the ALMA or return to the community and become the thriving ,inspiring and animating force in the community groups working for the poor and the disabled.

If you ,or someone you know, feel that the Spirit of the Lord calls you to the Vincentian Secular Institute ALMA in your country or to come to Indonesia to join us for a shorter or longer time in this Mission for the disabled in Indonesia contact us at the following email address: Story of Irlis, blind and deaf We keep in contact working together for the disabled and the abandoned. Asuhan Luhur Masyarakat Allah ALMA

Source: Alma