“This is truly the Opus Christi Salvatoris Mundi (Work of Christ, Savior of the World)” were the words of Saint John Paul II to Father Giovanni Salerno, on the 5th of November in 1986. Thus, the official name of the Missionary Servants of the Poor became Opus Christi Salvatoris Mundi.
There are more than 150 Missionary Servants of the Poor from 15 countries daily serving more than 1,000 children through free schooling, soup kitchens, medical clinics, and skilled training workshops.
Father Giovanni Salerno was born in Gela, Caltanissetta, Sicily on January 30, 1938. From 1957 to 1961 he studied theology at the Archdiocesan Seminary in Monreale, Palermo and was ordained a priest on December 23, 1961. In August of 1968, Father Salerno left his community of Augustinians for the foundation of a prelature in the Andean region of Apurimac, Peru. In this mission territory he found himself in an alarming situation. Whole villages lived in the stone age in complete abandonment. It was for this reason, and inspired by the encyclical Populorum progressio by Pope Paul VI, that Father Giovanni founded the Missionary Servants of the Poor (MSP) to respond to the call of the Pope to go to the great part of humanity that suffers hunger, injustice, and sickness.
We don’t go alone but as a Church to meet the poor, hence our mission is to bring all the riches of the Church to the poor to make them true princes, children of God.
Father Giovanni arrives in Peru as an Augustinian missionary for the Prelature of Chuquibambilla.
The Saint Teresa Home is founded to care for disabled and poor children as if they were Christ.
Father Giovanni receives the blessing of Saint John Paul II for the Movement of the Servants of the Poor of the Third World
The House of Formation for the men’s branch of the SPTW is opened in Ajofrin, Toledo, Spain.
Inauguration of the City of Boys where we care for many poor and orphaned boys
Prayer is the soul of our mission. The Contemplative Community is founded in 2009
Nazareth Village is inaugurated where the missionary families wish to live holiness
The first foreign foundations in Mexico (MSP Married Missionaries) and Cuba (MSP Priests)
Canonical recognition as two Religious Institutes: Male and Female