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Volume 16, Number 10

Oct. 9, 2017

On Oct. 2, the Memorial of Holy Guardian Angels, the Society of Mary celebrated the 200th anniversary of its founding. 
On that date in 1817, five young men came to Fr. William Joseph Chaminade and asked to form a religious congregation under his direction. These five, plus two more who soon joined them, were the first members of the Society of Mary.
Joyful anniversary celebrations last week took a variety of forms at sponsored schools, universities and retreat centers, although there was one unified effort: a prayer. “Across the U.S. Province, from Hawai’i to Florida, and from India to Ireland, we joined simultaneously in a bicentennial prayer based on time zone,” said Bro. Charles Johnson, a co-chair of the bicentennial committee. “It was a prayer of gratitude and celebration, and a reminder that we need to continue Mary’s work in the world today.”
In San Antonio, Marianists and members of the Marianist Family recognized deceased members of the Society of Mary. Over a 24-hour period, nearly 90 volunteers took part in “praying the necrology,” a reading of the names of all deceased brothers and priests — 4,489 in all.
Read more about Marianist history. See more photos.
1 Formation group at Chaminade's tomb fol Marianist Vigil
1 CJ relay fol
TOP LEFT: Novice Joseph Kim, Fr. Chris Wittmann, Novice Joseph Nugent, Fr. Bill Meyer and Bro. Mark Motz pause for a photo at the tomb of Blessed Chaminade in Bordeaux, France. The five were on a heritage tour in the days immediately preceding the bicentennial. TOP RIGHT: At the Marianist Residence chapel in San Antonio, Makena Hamilton reads the names of deceased Marianists as part of a 24-hour “praying of the necrology.” ABOVE: Students at Chaminade Julienne Catholic High School in Dayton join in a “water to wine” relay as part of bicentennial celebrations at the school. The relay was a light-hearted acknowledgement of the favorite Marianist miracle.
Like the rest of Puerto Rico, the school family of Colegio San José, a Marianist-sponsored school in San Juan, was hit hard by Hurricane Maria on Sept. 20.
In the most important ways, the CSJ family was spared the worst. The Marianist brothers, students and their families all survived the storm, and the school is mostly intact.
The four Marianists on site prayed out the storm in their community on the top floor of the school building which, unlike many on the island, is of sturdy construction. They had installed metal panels over the windows. “It was really scary for a good three hours,” said Bro. Armando Añeses. “The wind blew so furiously … and it seemed like it would never stop. Water was coming in around the metal panels the wind was blowing so hard.”

The statues of Blessed Chaminade and Our Lady somehow escaped damage from Hurricane Maria at Colegio San Jose.

The statue of Blessed Chaminade at Colegio San José somehow escaped damage from Hurricane Maria.

When the storm finally moved on, the Marianists were able to view the devastation. There has been a considerable amount of water damage, and part of the gym roof is missing. Resolution with the insurance company and repairs will take some time.
Classes resumed at CSJ on Oct. 4, with myriad adjustments to accommodate damaged areas and the limits of generator-provided electricity. Diesel fuel is expensive and in short supply.
“My biggest concern is for the school families,” said Bro. Armando. “Many workplaces will be closed for a long time, so parents will be going without paychecks. This will be a real hardship for many families,” he said, noting that 40 percent of the island’s population lives below the poverty line.
And for Bro. Armando, there’s an additional disappointment — he was scheduled to be ordained to the priesthood on Sept. 23 in San Juan. A new date has not yet been determined.
It will be many months before there’s a semblance of normality in Puerto Rico. Please keep island residents in your prayers. To lighten the burden for CSJ families in this difficult time, please consider making a donation toward tuition assistance for their sons. Watch a video from Bro. Francisco González, president of CSJ.  
Connie Ordower
Connie Ordower is a member of the Visitation Marianist State Community, a geographically dispersed Marianist Lay Community founded in 1966. She lives in Virginia and is a chaplain at Winchester Medical Center.
How do you stay connected with your Marianist Lay Community over long distances?
I treasure our two retreats a year, and keep in touch by phone and conference calls. Facebook and emails also help. When I can’t sleep at night, I pray for each person in our group starting in Hawai’i and ending in Florida. Connie Ordower fol
How does your work as a chaplain express your vow as a Lay Marianist?
I work in a 500-bed, level II trauma center. I see people at very difficult times in their lives. When I walk into a room, I ask Jesus and Mary to go with me and give me the words that the person or family needs.
How has humor played a role in your faith life?
I have a tendency to tell God what God should be doing. When I catch myself doing this, I often sense a humorous presence that says, “Where were you, Connie, when I created the universe?” Humor helps me lighten situations for patients and has helped our Lay Community by reminding us not take ourselves so seriously.
Read about the Visitation State Community in the spring issue of Alive magazine.
200 fol 3To celebrate the bicentennials of the Daughters of Mary Immaculate and the Society of Mary, FamilyOnline is featuring occasional peeks into the past.
This stern-looking assembly was celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Society of Mary, 100 years ago this month.
In back are Marianists Fr. Lawrence Yeske, Bro. George Sauer, Bro. John Waldron and Fr. Bernard O’Reilly. In front are Fr. George Meyer, SM Provincial; Trappist Abbot Edmund Obrecht, of Gethsemani, Kentucky; Bishop Joseph Schrembs, of Toledo, Ohio; Archbishop Henry Moeller of Cincinnati; Giovanni Bonzano, Apostolic Delegate to U.S.; Bishop Francis Howard of Columbus, Ohio;  Bro. Michael Schleich, SM, Inspector General; and Fr. Landelin Beck, SM, former Provincial.  Photo from the National Archives of the Marianist Province of the United States.



Accompanied by Bro. Al Koch on harmonica, Bro. Stan Zubek and his banjo are a favorite of visitors and staff at the Marianist Family Retreat Center in Cape MayPoint, New Jersey.

Together with Bro. Al Koch on harmonica, Bro. Stan Zubek and his banjo are favorites of visitors at the Marianist Family Retreat Center in Cape May Point, New Jersey.

Bro. Stan Zubek was four years old when he and other family members auditioned for a radio talent show in Cleveland. “We won first prize and later made a recording,” said Bro. Stan, who played the drums.
Music was how his family celebrated life. “On many occasions, we threw back the rug, got out a fiddle and danced and played together,” he recalled of his Polish relatives.
Seventy-one years later, Bro. Stan continues sharing his love of music at the Marianist Family Retreat Center in Cape May Point, New Jersey.
“People beg for Bro. Stan’s singalongs at our retreats,” said Jessica Sherwen, retreat program director. “He gets everybody involved, sometimes inviting participants to play musical instruments with him. Bro. Al Koch often joins him on the harmonica.”
Although the clarinet is Bro Stan’s signature instrument, he plays the banjo for the singalongs, and invites retreatants to make requests. American folk melodies, ballads and campfire songs top the list.
One of the reasons people enjoy singing is that “it triggers emotional memories that are stored in their bodies,” said Bro. Stan. “When we sing together, our hearts resonate together. It feels good. It invites people to celebrate being alive.”
At a retreat in September, Fr. Al McMenamy welcomes the newest member of the North Tesa Affilate group, Phillip Keller. At right is the group's coordinator, Andy Gillard. The Marianist Affiliates of North Texas (Denton, Coppel and Fort Worth) met for a retreat in September. In honor of the Marianist Bicentennial, the retreat focused on Adèle de Batz de Trenquelléon.
The weekend’s events included a ceremony of reception for the group’s newest affiliate, Phillip Keller. Fr. Al McMenamy is the group’s spiritual director. Learn more about Marianist Affiliates.
At a retreat in September, Fr. Al McMenamy welcomes the newest member of the North Texas Affilate group, Phillip Keller. At right is the group’s coordinator, Andy Gillard.


Jubiliarians 2a
Each year, the Society of Mary recognizes the brothers and priests who are marking milestones of their first professions of vows or of their priestly ordinations. This is the sixth and final group of 2017 jubilarians we honor as a special section of FamilyOnline.
McGuigan Dave 2015 FR. DAVID McGUIGAN – 25 years of profession
The first thing that impressed me about the Marianists was that I couldn’t tell who was in charge. Read more.
O'Neill Jesse 2015 BRO. JESSE O’NEILL – 25 years of profession
I have always heard it said that the reason you enter religious life is not the same as the reasons you stay. This reality has become so true in my life. Read more.
Solma, Marty (2) Aug 2016 FR. MARTIN SOLMA – 50 years of profession
It was improbable that a 14-year-old from Berea, Ohio, would attend St. Joseph High School in Cleveland. But, through the care and invitation of Bro. Stan Mathews, that’s what I did. Read more.
Thompson, John_2016 FR. JOHN THOMPSON – 25 years of profession
I can remember, as if it were yesterday, the day and place where I decided to apply to the Society of Mary. Read more.



Chaminade College Prep President Robert Webb with Bro. Kumaraswamy, Fr. Josephraj and Bro. Adam Becerra, FSP, Chaminade's director of campus ministry.

Chaminade College Prep President Robert Webb with Bro. Kumaraswamy, Fr. Josephraj and Bro. Adam Becerra, fsp, Chaminade’s director of mission integration.

When Fr. Josephraj, a Marianist from India, arrived in Los Angeles in August, it was his first time on U.S. soil. But when he and fellow Indian Bro. Kumaraswamy stepped onto the campus of Chaminade College Preparatory in California, they sensed they were on familiar ground.
“I felt the Marianist spirit at this school immediately,” said Fr. Josephraj, who is assisting Fr. Ted Ley as a chaplain this year.
Bro. Kumar, who spent the last two years working on a master’s degree in education at University of Dayton, is serving in campus ministry at the middle and high school.
Both men are spending time at Chaminade to experience the best practices of school administration in the Marianist tradition.
“It’s an opportunity to learn what works best and to bring this knowledge back to our Marianist schools and ministries in India,” said Bro. Kumar.
The immersion also is a chance for Chaminade students, faculty and staff to learn more about India – its culture, history and geography – and the common bonds they share as members of the Marianist Family. ”We are looking forward to a rich exchange,” said Bro. Kumar.

Sr. Durie Kim Archives dedication 9.17 FOL

At the Marianist Archives dedication and open house, Sr. Durie Kim points out herself in a photo of Marianist Sisters from decades earlier.

Archives dedication Stewart Ceballos 9-17 fol

Marianist aspirants Jordan Stewart and Leno Ceballos admire an 18th century monstrance that is part of the archive collection.

Old family treasures have found a new home.
In early September, members of the Marianist Family gathered for an open house and reception to dedicate the new site for the National Archives of the Marianist Province of the United States. The archives contains the permanent record of the administration of the Society of Mary in the United States from 1849 to the present, as well as an interesting assortment of photos, blueprints, maps, artwork and other cool stuff.
The archives’ new home is on the campus of St. Mary’s University in San Antonio. Learn more. Follow the Marianist Archives on Facebook

The new home of the Marianist Archives is on the campus of St. Mary’s University in San Antonio.


You’ll enjoy this new video from Villa Angela-St. Joseph, a Marianist-sponsored high school in Cleveland.


Jim Fitz Sean Ferguson Matt Lickenbrock fol

At UD’s RecPlex, Sean Ferguson and Matt Lickenbrock observe as Fr. Jim Fitz blesses the new interactive CPR kiosk.

The story has already achieved near-legend status.
In April 2015, University of Dayton student Matt Lickenbrock learned CPR at an interactive kiosk during a layover at a Texas airport.
Two days later, he used those new skills to save the life of a fellow student, Sean Ferguson, who was struck by lightning on a campus parking lot.
Now UD is boasting the first-ever such kiosk to be installed on a college campus. The donated machine was blessed by Fr. Jim Fitz on Sept. 15 at a ceremony attended by Sean and Matt. Read more.




Ernst - 1972


Ernst Louis 2015 fol


Bro. Louis Ernst died Sept. 23, 2017, at age 81. He was a Marianist for 64 years. Bro. Lou was a much-loved teacher and tutor, as well as a stalwart sports fan at the high schools where he taught, and at St. Mary’s University. See photos. Read his obituary.



Moran James 2015 fol


Bro. James Moran died Sept. 8, 2017, at age 90. Bro. Jim had an atypical Marianist journey, entering the congregation at age 60. He was skilled as a teacher of English as a second language. See photos. Read his obituary.

Recent deaths and those in need of prayers for healing in the Marianist Family

Obituaries of Marianist brothers and priests (U.S. Province) since 2007.

We embrace the religious life in her name … in order to make her known, loved and served, convinced that we will not call others back to Jesus, except through his most holy mother.”


This is part of a series on Marianists who are on the path to sainthood. We thank Bro. David Betz and Marianist Affiliate Mary Kay Fitzpatrick for preparing these articles.
Martyr Leibar This Marianist Moment centers on Fr. Miguel Leibar, who adopted this sentiment for his life: “I want to be a little instrument in the hands of God.”
He was among 15 Spanish Marianists to give their lives for their faith. He was martyred in 1936 in Madrid.
Born to Franciso Leibar and Juana Garay in a small village in northern Spain, Miguel was the third of their four children. Miguel was a lively child who loved to read and took an interest in religion. He made friends with Carlos Eraña and Francisco Lasagabaster, two future Marianists. Read more.
The Marianist Province of the United States seeks an experienced  communicator to serve at province offices in St. Louis. A top candidate will be a strong writer, editor and proofreader with at least five years of experience in a corporate or organizational communications setting and experience with WordPress and e-newsletter programs. Learn more.
The Marianist Social Justice Collaborative is offering a faith-filled, affirming retreat Oct. 27-29 in Cincinnati for LGBTQ women and men and their allies. Register by Oct. 13. Learn more
Oct. 12: Our Lady of the Pillar
Nov. 1: All Saints


Bro. Phil Aaron
Fr. Mike Nartker
Susan Vogt

Bro. Brian Zampier


District Update from the Marianist District of India
Gifts & Tasks
from the International Organization of Marianist Lay Communities

Justice Jottings from the Marianist Social Justice Collaborative

Magnificat from the World council of the Marianist Family
MLC-NA e-News from the Marianist Lay Community of North America
Open Window from Bergamo Center for Lifelong Learning


Printable version of this issue of FamilyOnline


2017 FamilyOnline schedule and submission guidelines

MarDoxology fol1

Editor: Carol Dexter; assistant: Ann Mueller. This monthly email newsletter produced by the Society of Mary features news about the Marianist Family: Marianist brothers and priests (Society of Mary), Marianist Sisters; and Lay Marianists. Fr. Martin Solma, SM, provincial; Bro. Joe Kamis, SM, assistant provincial. Send news, digital photos and comments and suggestions to editor Carol Dexter using FamilyOnline as your subject line.


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