The Pauline Cooperators: Friends of Jesus Good Shepherd
Testimonies on the Word of God
- Year of the Bible -
Who they are
The Friends of Jesus Good Shepherd (FJGS) are part of the Association of the Pauline Co-operators of the Pauline Family founded by Blessed James Alberione. They are men, women and young people, aware that they are called by the Holy Spirit to the perfection of charity and the commitment to evangelization (cf. LG 31 and 33). They assume their baptismal vocation by making the aim of the Pauline Family their own and sharing the pastoral mission entrusted to the Sisters of Jesus the Good Shepherd - Pastorelle (SJBP).
The Friends of Jesus Good Shepherd share "the work of evangelization of the SJBP by collaborating in the pastoral mission of the Local Church and with pastoral workers, according to the ecclesial guidelines, the disposition and availability of time and means". (Directory of FJGS n.16:1).
They can participate in the pastoral mission by personal and community prayer for the mission and the edification of the Kingdom; by engaging in projects that are of benefit to the mission of the Pastorelle Sisters; by making offerings according to one’s means, so as to contribute to the implementation of different apostolic projects.
The Friends of Jesus Good Shepherd assume the spirituality of the Pauline Family: "to live and to announce Jesus Christ Master and Shepherd, the Way, the Truth and the Life to all people, to the whole person: mind, will, heart", using all the most modern and speedy means so that the Gospel may reach everyone. Like Saint Paul, they pledge themselves to live their life in Christ, to be able to say, "It is not I who live, but Christ who lives in me" (Gal 2:20). Mary, Mother of the Good Shepherd is an example of faith and of total acceptance of God’s will. Saints Peter and Paul are the inspiring models because of their spiritual and apostolic life.
A bit of history
The Association of the Pauline Cooperators was founded in Alba (Cúneo) Italy, on 29 June 1917 by Blessed James Alberione (1881-1971), who envisioned it closely connected to the first religious Institute he had found, the Society of Saint Paul. The Association had an progressive development under the guidance of the Founder who extended the radius of the ministries of the Cooperators according to the specific mission of the other Pauline Congregations. In 1958 while speaking to the Pastorelle, he said, “Form for yourselves Cooperators. This is very useful and all institutions have their Cooperators; be they called with one name or another”.
The Pauline Cooperators, Friends of Jesus Good Shepherd are called by such name because they share in the pastoral mission of the Pastorelle Sisters in the Church, particularly in faith accompaniment, in liturgical animation, in the formation of pastoral workers and in the involvement in charitable actions in various contexts. Fr Alberione in 1958 again said to the Pastorelle Sisters:
“The Cooperators are those who work with you, (...) for the same objective they collaborate with you, and that is, the objective of the Pastorelle in helping souls to be saved and lead them to Heaven.
(AAP 1958, 2)