On March 6, 1858, Pope Pius IX dispensed Fr. Isaac Hecker and four of his associates from their vows as Redemptorist priests.  This allowed them to form the first US men's religious order, the Missionary Society of St. Paul the Apostle on July 7, 1858, under the direction of the local bishops.

Isaac Hecker Portrait.jpg

Cardinal Della Genga wrote that Pope Pius IX wanted these men to:

 ” … spare no labor in the prosecution of the holy missions, in the conversion of souls, and in the dissemination of Christian doctrine.”

His Holiness confidently trusts,” the document continues, “that the above mentioned priests will labor by work, example, and word in the vineyard of the Lord, and give themselves with alacrity to the eternal salvation of souls, and promote with all their power the sanctification of their neighbor.”

For more info, please check out Paulist Fr. Ron Franco's blog for March 6.