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Society of the Divine Word

Philippines Southern Province

About us

Society of the Divine Word

Hands around the world

We are international missionary religious congregation of the Catholic Church. We have 6005 members working in 76 countries of the world. We live together in multicultural communities.

The ultimate purpose of our mission today is the same as it has been since the time of our founder, “to proclaim the Kingdom of God’s love” as the common destiny of all humanity and the horizon toward which we travel. It is from the internal loving dialogue of the triune God that this mission emerges, a dialogue of love and forgiveness with all humanity. We do not invent our own mission – it is Missio Dei – we are called by the Father, sent by the Word and led by the Spirit.

Many religious orders and congregations have certain characteristics or traits that make them known. We are recognised by the four characteristic dimensions: the Bible, Mission Animation, Communication, Justice and Peace and Integrity of Creation (JPIC). With regards to the missions, what makes us unique from many missionary institutes is that mission areas or regions are not the sole responsibility of individual provinces, but of the whole Society. Our generalate may appoint members from any country to any other country with priority given to those places which are most in need. This also explains why many SVD communities are international in character.

We have two sister congregations, also founded by Saint Arnold Janssen. They are the Missionary Sisters Servants of the Holy Spirit (SSpS), otherwise known as the "Blue Sisters" and a contemplative branch called the Sister Servants of the Holy Spirit of Perpetual Adoration (SSpSAP) or better known as the "Pink Sisters", the nicknames allude to the colour of the respective religious habits.

Official NameSociety of the Divine Word
Official Latin NameSocietas Verbi Divini
AbbreviationSVD
Founding DateSeptember 8, 1875
FounderSt. Arnold Janssen
TypeInstitute of Consecrated Life
Members6005
AffiliationsCatholic Church


Above all we owe God the Lord great thanks for his extraordinary material help during all these years. I believe this is a distinct visible sign that he wills us to continue trusting in him on the way which he has led us. St. Arnold Janssen

The world is our parish
SVD Activities in the World
The General Chapter of SVD met Pope in the Vatican on June 22, 2018