St. Vincent de Paul

Serving others as we grow in faith and fellowship

Our St. Vincent de Paul members (also known as “Vincentians”) are men and women who strive to grow spiritually by offering person-to-person service to neighbors in need.

Members of all ages, every race, and all incomes are welcome! We simply share an awareness that our blessings of time, talent, and treasure are to be shared with people in need.

We work very closely with Fr. Ambrose and Fr. Nivin to help meet needs of our parishioners and refugees.

logo for St Vincent de Paul Society

Come and see

You are always invited to our  monthly SVDP meetings – generally the 1st Tuesday of each month at 5:30 PM in the St. Ambrose Parish Hall. Details are at the bottom of this page.

Local – Metro – National – Global

Our parish group (called a Conference) is part of an international movement that began in Paris in 1833 through Blessed Frederic Ozanam and Blessed Rosalie Rendu. The Society of Saint Vincent de Paul has grown to 800,000 members in over 150 countries!  Learn about the SVDP National Council of the United States

In Central Iowa, 13 parish-based Conferences form the Des Moines Council of SVDP– where professional staff plus volunteers operate free food pantries, back-to-work programs and more. The Council has worked since 1924 to help those in need become self-sufficient. The three SVDP Thrift Stores in Des Moines & Windsor Heights provide revenue to support these good works.  (Thank you for donating goods and shopping there!)

When a parish conference can’t meet an individual’s urgent need, we turn to other conferences in the metro for funds. This helps all of us better serve needs in our community.

food and hygiene items gathered at St Ambrose for SVDP food pantries

An easy way to give food and essential items to households in need

First Sunday every month: at Saturday & Sunday Masses

Food Pantry Weekend

Please bring items to Mass monthly that can be given to our neighbors in need through the metro St. Vincent de Paul food pantries! Simply place these items in the baskets near the altar:

  • Foods that do not need a refrigerator or freezer
  • Items to keep bodies and homes clean – like shampoo, dish soap, cleaning supplies, diapers and feminine hygiene productes
  • Cash to purchase food that’s most needed in the pantry

Thank you for your generosity and compassion! Each month, our parishioners fill a volunteer’s vehicle with things that people need! In the past year, together we gave items worth $4,000 – and we gave $2,000 in cash to purchase most-needed items!

truck that picks up large donations to St Vincent de Paul

Let's fill this truck for those in need!

Items most needed:

  • Clothing, jackets & hats in good condition & clean – especially for men or boys
  • Kitchen – like dishes, pans, silverware
  • Small appliances that work – like alarm clocks, lamps, small portable stereos
  • Home items –  like small furniture, blankets or decorations

Want to volunteer at the truck? Contact our parish office.

Sunday, April 30

Bring your used clothes & home goods for those in need

Please bring items in good condition to share. SVDP will give them to others or sell at the 3 SVDP thrift stores at low prices. You help people afford what they need, and the sale supports SVDP’s food pantry, job programs, and a fresh start for people coming out of prison.

Come to the parish North parking lot – behind St. Ambrose Cathedral

8:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Our St. Vincent de Paul volunteers will help load your items into the SVDP Donation Truck in our parish parking lot. Let’s fill that truck!


Please do not bring heavy furniture to the truck. But SVDP can pick it up at your home!  Ask for a pick-up

Please do NOT bring these items: SVDP cannot accept them.

  • Broken, torn, stained or non-working items
  • Baby car seats, baby beds, strollers or high chairs
  • Major appliances, entertainment centers or pianos/organs
  • Beds, mattresses, metal desks or office furniture
  • Computers or printers
  • Exercise or Medical equipment
  • Televisions more than 5 years old
  • Paint or home repair materials

The need is great. Thank you for helping!

SVDP volunteers cooking a meal for a shelter

Interested but can't make it to these meetings? Let us know. We'll invite you to volunteer from time to time.

You’re welcome at our monthly meetings

St. Ambrose SVDP generally meet the 1st Tuesday of each month at 5:30 PM in the St. Ambrose Parish Hall (609 High Street).

Expect a casual one-hour gathering: a small group of friends, beginning with prayer, and discussing the kinds of help and activities we’re feeling called to pursue. Coming to a meeting will help you see our SVDP in action – and there’s no obligation.

Email for details

Do you know someone who needs help? Let us know, and we’ll see what we can do.

Where to find us

St. Ambrose Cathedral

607 High St, Des Moines, IA 50309

Mass Times

Visitor Info