About the Black Bag Collection

In 1833, our founder, Blessed Frederic Ozanam, and the original members realized they needed money to fund their good works of charity. Because the giving capacity of the members varied, they decided to pass around a simple black bag so that each member could give what they could afford to give. Today, we continue this tradition.


This year's Black Bag Collection will be held the weekend of July 11-12, 2020. This year's theme is "Extend mercy towards others, so there can be no one whom you meet without helping."


The special collection will be taken at mass in every parish of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston. You can also donate online, by phone, or by mailing a check to our office. Please include Black Bag in the memo. 

The funds collected during this single weekend play a crucial role in the Society’s ability to fund our Vincentian Services Center, Food Network Ministry, Voucher Ministry, Home Visits, and more.


Despite being closely tied to the Archdiocese, the Society does not receive funding from the Diocesan Service Funds (DSF) like some of our sister organizations.

Celebrating 50 years!

In 1970, Bishop Markovsky established the first Black Bag Collection in our Archdiocese. Since then, every year the Archdiocese holds a special collection dedicated to the charity works of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. This year marks 50 years since the first collection! This is our largest fundraiser of the year. 

Spirituality of the Black Bag

Yes, there is a spirituality of the Black Bag. Just as the spirit of charity moves among us all, the passing of the Black Bag in parishes, companies and neighborhoods is passed from hand to hand. As we act, one in the spirit of giving, the simple black bag is transformed into something beautiful and deeply spiritual among friends. We should all be aware of the joy in giving to the Lord. 

© 1871-2020 Society of St. Vincent de Paul Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston.


The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is a non-profit organization offering basic-needs assistance to the local community in need. Assistance is given through our Food Network, Clothing & Furniture Voucher, Disaster Response, and Rent & Utility Assistance Programs. The Society has been serving the local community since 1871.


For more information, you can contact us via email or by phone. 

Email: info@svdphouston.org | Phone: 713.741.8234

Mailing Address: 2403 Holcombe Blvd, Houston, TX 77021

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