The Passionists were founded by Paul of the Cross (Paolo Danei 1694-1775) in 1720.
St. Paul of the Cross saw in the Passion of Jesus “the greatest work of divine Love” and the revelation of the power of the Resurrection to overcome the forces of evil. He bequeathed to his followers the charism of announcing to their contemporaries the love of God for each and every person shown in the passion and death of Jesus who rose victorious on Easter day.
The Passionists make a special promise to promote the memory of the passion of Jesus by word and deed. They do this especially in preaching and various ministries among the poor, and the marginalized of every kind in whom they see the Crucified today.
Another characteristic of the Passionists is their life in community. Passionist fraternity means that everything is held in common. Time is given to community prayer and to the contemplative dimension of life. Passionists are active contemplatives who, in a creative way, unite contemplation and an active pastoral life.
St. Paul of the Cross believed that the Passion of Jesus revealed “God’s greatest gift of love for us.”
The 1975 Holy Year Jubilee coincided with the 200th anniversary of the death of Saint Paul of the Cross. On Good Friday of that year, these Stations of the Cross with reflections from Saint Paul of the Cross were led by Pope Paul VI at the Coliseum in Rome.
There are many Passionist saints, men and women, martyrs and mystics. Causes for canonization have been opened for others.
The special insignia of every Passionist is the “Sign”, the heart-shaped emblem you see on this page. It catches, in an image, the meaning of Passionist life.
The Passionists’ mission is to keep alive in the world the love of Jesus Crucified as seen in His Sacred Passion. This mission is rooted in prayerful community life and is expressed in collaborative ministry to the people of God in all walks of life, especially the poor and suffering.
In creating a TV parish for the home bound and infirm, the Passionists of St. Paul of the Cross Province work to fulfill this mission every week with The Sunday Mass.
Reverend Fr. Thomas Berry C.P (1914-2009) was a Catholic priest of the Passionist order, cultural historian and ecotheologian (although cosmologist and geologian — or “Earth scholar” — were his preferred descriptors).