||Mission Together was started by Charles de Forbin Janson in 1843.
He was born in France in 1785, to a noble family. His mother was a friend of Queen Marie Antoinette, the wife of the King of France, Louis XVI. He grew up with a deep love for the Church.
During the French revolution the ordinary citizens took control of the country. Aristocrats like the de Forbin Jansons had to flee because the revolutionaries were executing the nobility on the guillotine.
Charles' mother offered to take the place of Marie Antoinette and enable her to escape. The queen refused and was later executed.
Later, Napoleon Bonaparte became the leader of France. He needed many nobles to return to help run the country. The de Forbin Jansons returned, and Napoleon chose Charles to be a diplomat. However, Charles decided he would rather serve God and abandoned his career to become a priest.
As a priest, he loved the missions and asked the Holy Father if he could go to China to spread the Good News. But Pope Pius VII asked him to remain in France where the revolution had made things difficult for the Church.
Charles became a great preacher and travelled all over France preaching the Gospel. He was chosen to be bishop of Nancy but the local citizens still harboured resentment towards the Church and would not allow him to stay.
Charles constantly received letters from missionaries in China begging financial help to save the starving and abandoned babies there. He did not know where to find such funds. He met with Pauline Jaricot who had started her own charity to help missionaries. She advised him that no one could understand the needs of children better than children - it would be better for him to start a children's charity.
And so, in 1843 he called upon the children of France to help save the children of China. He challenged them to become Missionary Children - helping to spread the Good News. He asked them to say a Hail Mary every day and give a small coin every month to help feed the children of China.
Their motto was 'children helping children' - and so it remains to this day.
The children of France took up this great task. Since then, this unique work has spread across the world. Today it is present in 110 countries and helps make Jesus known to children everywhere. Charles de Forbin Janson is the man who started Mission Together, and now we continue to follow his vision; educating children about the world in which they live and encouraging them to pray for and share with those most in need.