Founded in 1843, the Missionary Childhood Association (formerly Holy Childhood Association) is an international organization whose membership is made up of students in Catholic elementary schools and religious education programs. Msgr. Charles de Forbin Janson, a French bishop, was inspired by Pauline Jaricot’s initiative to help missionaries through the Pontifical Society of the Propagation of the Faith. He sought to involve the children in France founding the society and asking them to help children in China through prayer and donations. Today, it is an organization dedicated to fostering children’s awareness of the missionary nature of the Church. With children in more than 130 countries participating the motto of the association has been updated to say: children evangelizing, children praying for the children, children helping children worldwide.
The Missionary Childhood Association (MCA) program exists to be of service to schools and religious education programs in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles by fostering in children a missionary spirit and leadership, that motivates them to share their faith and material goods, with other children who are most in need. Through our material and resources, we seek to foster a missionary vocation in children so they may take part in the life of the church as missionary disciples.
Authorized by the Vatican, and in collaboration with the U.S. Bishops, MCA distributes educational and fund-raising programs to schools and religious education programs throughout the United States. It is sometimes known as the Pontifical Association of the Missionary Childhood because it is sponsored in a special way by the Pope. It is the official agency of the Holy Father for the distribution of the fundraising proceeds realized through the efforts of children for their underprivileged brothers and sisters in Third World situations.