Planting Seeds and Nourishing Connections
Since its inception 30 years ago, the Marianist Environmental Education Center (MEEC) has been passionate about the care and stewardship of creation. And for good reason.
“The natural world isn’t a work of art for us to sit back and enjoy, but something that is integral to our lives as humans – it nourishes us, brings us closer to the divine and is in need of reconciliation,” said Tara Poling, in a recent article in the Catholic Telegram (read the full article here).
Tara, program coordinator for MEEC, was one of the featured speakers at the 14th annual Midwest Native Plant Conference held July 22 – 24, 2022, on the grounds of Mount Saint John in Dayton, Ohio.
Since 2008, MEEC, in collaboration with Bergamo Center for Lifelong Learning and others at Mount Saint John, has hosted the Midwest Native Plant Society’s annual conference. The Midwest Native Plant Society is a nonprofit committed to educating the public about the importance of native plants and conservation efforts.
Highlights of the conference included nationally known speakers representing the fields of horticulture, landscape design, environmental science, biology, ecology and wetland science.
A Midwest Native Plant and Artisan Sale was also held featuring 115 species of wildflowers, grasses, sedges and shrubs to purchase for home gardens and original works of art to inspire a connection to nature.
Click here for resources on native plants and ways you can be a good steward of our planet.
In The News
Lay Marianists Dorothy Mensah-Aggrey, Crystal Sullivan and José Julian Matos Auffant attended the Journeying Together national event, “Alive in Christ: Young, Diverse, Prophetic Voices Journeying Together.” The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) sponsored the gathering held in Chicago.
They represented all three Marianist universities, SM, FMI and Marianist Family Ministries, as they participated in the intercultural faith experience attended by young adults, bishops and pastoral ministers from all over the country. “We were also able to share the Marianist charism with all in attendance through a ‘Setting the Marianist Table’ experience as a meal prayer. It was the perfect group in which to introduce our charism, as they were reflecting on the experience of Catholics from diverse cultures and backgrounds and what it means to be a deeply inclusive and diverse Church,” said Crystal Sullivan, Executive Director of Campus Ministry at University of Dayton.
The event is a culmination of a two-year and five-stage process. Click here to learn more about the journey.
Religious Brothers Conference Pillar Award
Brother Stephen Glodek was awarded the Religious Brothers Conference Pillar Award on July 20, 2022, at the annual assembly of the Religious Brothers Conference in Los Angeles, CA, at Mater Dolorosa Retreat Center.
The Pillar of the Religious Brothers Conference is awarded by the Conference “to a person who has made significant contribution to further the vocation of the Religious Brother and has contributed significantly to the growth of the Conference.” Brother Glodek has been a board member of the Conference since 2013 and served as president of the Conference from 2016-2021.
Awarded Top Read of 2022 by CMA
The Catholic Media Association (CMA) named One Heart with Courage: Essays and Stories as a top read of 2022. The collection of inspirational nonfiction stories was written by Teri Rizvi, the Executive Director of Strategic Communications for University of Dayton. Rizvi writes about her marriage, which spans two religions and two cultures in a world that’s too often divided. She says, “The book has a distinct Marianist flavor, with essays about the men of 1903 Trinity (a Marianist student house on campus)…”
Striving and Thriving
Chaminade University Honolulu made news headlines numerous times in the 2021-2022 school year. From instituting adaptation and change as it helped conquer Covid issues by creating outdoor classrooms, to making new strides in its nursing program, being part of a Zoom call with Pope Francis and gaining national respect in the world of sports – the university continues to make positive impacts.
Gamers Unite in Marianist Might
The Chaminade Julienne Catholic High School’s Gaming Club held its first Gamers Afternoon, a four-hour event offering two tournaments in Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros Ultimate plus 16 screens projecting games from the 1980s to modern gaming.
“I am very proud of the success of this club, now in its third year. We are the first high school in the Dayton, Ohio, area to offer such an experience. Our event drew 40 plus local junior high students from public and private schools and was praised by parents and students for being fun and bringing kids together. I feel there is something uniquely Marianist about what I am doing with this group. Our club brings together kids who enjoy gaming and encourages inclusivity and community building through shared gaming,” said Bro. Justin Quiroz.
They are already planning to hold another Gamers Afternoon next year.
Marianist Ministries in Action
Marianist Charism Comes Alive
Bro. Ed Brink has spent years thinking about what makes a Marianist education distinctive and how the gifts of the Charism can play a lifelong role in one’s spiritual growth.
That’s why his job as Vice President for Mission and Rector at Chaminade University of Honolulu is so gratifying.
“A large portion of my job is formation,” he said. “It is rewarding when I see people get hooked by the Marianist Charism and are eager to learn more about it. Figuring out how to provide them with information and experiences – the things that help them grow spiritually – is best done with others in community.”
That community includes approximately 2,167 students who come from a culturally rich mix of Asian, Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, White, Hispanic and Multi-ethnic backgrounds. It also includes roughly 200 faculty and staff.
The school boasts a student/faculty ratio of 11:1 – meaning that the learning environment is personable and family-like. It is an ideal setting to encourage community building, hospitality and Family Spirit – characteristics that define the Marianist Charism.
Bro. Ed believes that being educated in the Marianist tradition should not be taken for granted. He has a challenge for all graduates:
“Whatever drew you to the University or whatever you like about the experience of being here, points to a responsibility to keep those aspects alive and pertinent,” he said. “I hope those experiences lead you to make a difference in the lives of others and make the world a more just and peaceful place.”
Walking in the Footsteps of Jesus
We invite you to join us on a 10-day pilgrimage to the Holy Land from April 18-27, 2023.
The excursion is hosted by the Marianist Mission with Fr. Tim Kenney as the pilgrimage director, “I am inviting you to join with members of our Marianist Family on this inspiring adventure. A journey to the Holy Land is a spiritual pilgrimage every Christian should try to make at least once in a lifetime. When you are there, the Bible comes alive.”
On the tour, you can expect to visit some extraordinary places like the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, Shepherd’s Field, Nazareth, the Sea of Galilee, Capernaum, the Mount of Beatitudes, the site of the Sermon on the Mount, Tabgha, the location of the Miracle of Loaves and Fishes, Mt. Tabor and much more!
From the Archives
The Magic of a Marianist
Did you know there is a celebrity magician among the Marianist Brothers? Bro. John Hamman (Sept. 3, 1927-Dec. 5, 2000) was considered “world-renowned” in magic, so much so that the world-famous David Copperfield asked to meet him when visiting St. Louis. He autographed a picture for Bro. John inscribing, “Congratulations on a lifetime of wonderful magic.”
Bro. Hamman taught at the following Marianist high schools, Central Catholic, St. Michael’s, St. Mary’s and St. John Vianney, until he retired in 1986.
You can find a Wikipedia page on Bro. John, even buy a six-set DVD collection explaining some of his tricks of the trade and learn more on the book written about him by clicking the buttons below.
Click here to read an in-depth story about his incredible life.
Pray With Us
Please join us in prayer for these members of the Marianist Family.
Bro. Robert Hanss, 88, died on July 10, 2022, with 66 years of religious profession. Brother Robert “Bob” was a beloved teacher, professor, geologist, missionary, novice master and community director. While devoting much of his life to the classroom, he felt particularly blessed by the years he spent in parish ministry – work that brought him in close touch with the poor and gave him a new “way to know Jesus.”
Bro. Jerome Matz, 81, died on July 12, 2022, in San Antonio, Texas, with 62 years of religious profession. Brother Jerome “Jerry” was a beloved teacher, professor, college administrator, survey researcher and sociologist. Known for his gracious spirit of hospitality and inclusivity, Brother Jerry also took great satisfaction in his decades of survey research that supported the efforts of various religious congregations, dioceses, parishes and business organizations to strengthen their sense of mission.
Bro. Frank O’Donnell, 79, died on July 22, 2022, in Baltimore, Maryland with 62 years of religious profession. His obituary will appear in the next issue of FamilyOnline. Although his official Marianist obituary is not ready for publication, you can click here to read the obituary published by the Archdiocese of Baltimore.
Marianists Celebrate Jubilees
Each year, the Society of Mary recognizes brothers and priests who are marking milestones of their first profession of vows or their priestly ordinations. We continue to highlight our 2022 Jubilarians in a special section of FamilyOnline.
BROTHER A. JOSEPH BARRISH
75 years of profession
After all these years, I am blessed to truly believe that my image of God is one in which He is continuously smiling and laughing. My life has been filled with both many graces and surprises!
I enjoyed my early years of formation and studies very much. I was fortunate to study both in the U.S. and Europe. Superiors and my fellow brothers have both supported and encouraged me…
FATHER BERTRAND BUBY
70 years of profession
From my first year with the Marianists, my Marianist Family of the Society of Mary was involved in my formation. I felt a warmth of welcome from them and from the presence of Mary in my life. This developed from decade to decade. I think it never stops. Like our permanent mission to be apostles of Mary so, too, Marianist formation is always at work in us…
FATHER PATRICK TONRY
70 years of profession
I met the Marianists at my brother John’s first vows in Beacon, New York, on Aug. 22, 1949. At that time, I was considering joining the Capuchins, but was so impressed by the joyful fraternity of the Marianists I met at first vows, that I wanted to become a Marianist myself. That experience, “vision,” has been my life these past 70 years and has sustained me in good and difficult times.
BROTHER THOMAS GIARDINO
60 years of profession
It’s a big number! A lot of days. What makes them real and a joy for me is reflected in my favorite article  in our Rule of Life, “To the end of our days, we are happy to spend our lives and our strength in Mary’s service since they belong to her …”
The path of Marianist days began for me as a search for freedom, even if I didn’t realize it fully then.
FATHER THOMAS SCHROER
50 years of ordination
I love Frederick Buechner’s definition of a vocation as where “your deep passion (or gladness) meets the world’s deep need.” My “deep passion” was introduced to “the world’s deep need” way back in 1956 at the tender age of 14, at Marianist Chaminade High School in Dayton, Ohio.
Good to Know
Life Testimony – Fr. Paul Landolfi
Once, when writing an appreciation of Blessed William Joseph Chaminade, Fr. Paul Landolfi used words that could easily have been applied to his own life as well: “It is a fundamental truth of faith that God is always present in our lives, loving us, guiding us and revealing himself to us. Usually, when we look back in retrospect, we recognize that God always has been with us.”
In Paul’s case, God’s provident care was intimately connected to the Society of Mary. The beloved teacher, chaplain and spiritual director had 73 years of religious profession when he died in 2017 at the age of 90. But he had actually spent nearly 85 of his years in the company of Marianists, having grown up in an orphanage run by them. He lost his mother when he was only five years old, and his father died a few years later; still, he found in the Brothers’ care a family spirit that sustained and nurtured him as a boy.
Click here to read more in the July edition of Via Latina.
Now Accepting Seed Grant Applications
Do you have a project that needs additional funds? The Visitation Marianist State Community is a virtual community of vowed lay Marianists with a long history of serving the Marianist family. It is committed to putting financial resources toward projects which may need assistance to get started or expand into a new area. The foundation is particularly committed to enabling small communities and fledgling service projects to thrive. The four project categories are:
- Strengthen Marianist Lay Communities and Network
- Assist in building the Catholic church
- Impact the faith and involvement of young adults in the church
- Social justice areas: Economic Justice, Environmental Justice and Human Rights
Awards are granted each year to groups or ministries within the United States. The proposed projects are submitted for consideration via an application form. Applications are due by the end of August. Click here to see the projects that were awarded in 2021.
Stay in Touch
AMU Newsletter from the Association of Marianist Universities
District Update #60 from the Marianist District of India
Gifts and Tasks from the Int. Organization of Marianist Lay Communities
Justice Jottings from the Marianist Social Justice Collaborative
Magnificat from the World Council of the Marianist Family
NACMS Newsletter from the North American Center for Marianist Studies
Via Latina 22 from the General Administration of the Society of Mary The Fulcrum from the Marianist LIFE National Office
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