March 2021
Dear Friends,

Fr. Joe Stefanelli, SM provided our Marianist Family with many valuable resources which offer us insights into the lives of our Marianist Founders.  In his little book about Fr. Chaminade he writes on page 1 about Fr. Chaminade’s pragmatic and visionary spirit.  He writes, “Each time his vision was threatened he found new ways of moving toward the fulfillment of his dreams.”
I recently had the opportunity to participate in a virtual retreat weekend with my local MLC Ahava, which provided space for reflection during this pandemic year.  This quotation was one that resonated particularly with me.  We are officially one liturgical year into the global pandemic and when I ponder the state of the world it seems that many of our visions for the world have been derailed in one way or another. 

I think taking inspiration from Fr. Chaminade about finding new ways to fulfill our dreams is a way that we can creatively bring our charism into dialogue with our wounded world. 
Will you take an opportunity this Lenten season to consider how some of your visions might have been threatened by this global pandemic?  Will you take time to mourn those losses? Will you also take time to consider the inspiration of our Marianist Charism which called Fr. Chaminade to consider new ways of moving toward the fulfillment of your dreams? (Even if these dreams take on a different form or imagining than you would have previously envisioned)
As part of my annual recommitment as a member of an MLC I focused in on a very specific sentence of our commitment statement  “transformation to a world in need”. As part of this commitment I will take time this Lenten season to pray for our Marianist Lay Community of North America as we grapple with how to embrace new ways of moving toward the fulfillment of our dreams.

Peace today,
Inviting Applications for the MLC-NA National Director
Are you being called to serve the Marianist Laity with your time, skills, and gifts?

In very exciting news, MLC-NA is seeking a full-time National Director! Some of the main responsibilities of this position will be as follows:
  • Developing and implementing a comprehensive development plan for MLC-NA.
  • Expanding MLC-NA's member communications and support.
  • Being a collaborative point of contact for the Marianist Lay Branch.
  • Planing annual gatherings for Lay Marianists to connect and engage with the charism.

The complete position description and information on how to apply may be found here. Applications are due by 5 PM ET on April 1, 2021.
MLC-NA National Director Search Update
Now that the announcement has been made for the MLC-NA National Director, the process for conducting the search is underway! The following individuals have agreed to serve on the search committee: 
This committee will be charged to review the applications and determine how many candidates to invite for an initial interview, develop the interview questions, and prepare the evaluation forms. 

How can you be involved in this exciting search process with MLC-NA?
  • Lay Marianists will have the opportunity to attend an open forum with the National Director candidates later in the process. Please be on the lookout for more information on this in the near future and join us for those meetings!
  • Look deeply into your own Marianist circles and encourage people to apply whom you think would make great candidates for this position.
This is your last chance to register for MLC-NA's virtual formation program! The Virtual Formation Program is being facilitated by the MLC-NA Office of Education. Please consider this invitation to formation yourself and share it in your communities.

There is a small resource fee of $45.

All are welcome!

Registration closes March 14. 
Marianist Feast Days

March 19 - Feast of St. Joseph, spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary
March 25 - Feast of the Annunciation, Patronal Feast of the Family of Mary
April 8 - Chaminade's Birthday

Patronal Feast of the Marianist Family Reflection and Prayer Model

The IO-MLC has developed a reflection and prayer model for the Marianist Family to pray together on March 25 to celebrate the Patronal Feast of the Marianist Family. The main question of focus is: What if this Patronal Feast of the year 2021 gave us the opportunity to measure how we live
the “yes” of Mary in our life during these months of the health crisis? Please find the English reflection and prayer here! A version in French can also be accessed here.
Year of Shared Discernment
Get Involved

1. Fill in a Survey to share your insights and experiences with MLC-NA!

2. Join in a YSD Zoom call with other Lay Marianists:

  • Tuesday, March 16 from 8-9 PM ET/7-8 pm CT/5-6 PM PT: 
  • Zoom Link to Join; Meeting ID: 868 4813 5191; Passcode: Marianist
  • Hosted by Kay Stone & Errol Christian 
  • Thursday, March 25 from 10-11 PM ET/9-10 PM CT 7-8 pm PT/4-5 PM HT: 
  • Zoom Link to Join; Meeting ID: 859 1984 8149; Passcode: Marianist
  • Hosted by Grissel Benitez-Hodge & Ellen Celaya
  • Monday, April 10 from 8-9 PM ET/7-8 PM CT/5-6 PM PT
  • Zoom Link to Join; Meeting ID: 865 2391 3506; Passcode: Marianist
  • Hosted by Linda Flores-Tober & Jose Matos Auffant

Important Links:
Other Important Announcements:
Two Area Reps Needed! 
MLC-NA is seeking two Area Representatives to provide support to Lay Marianists in North America! This is truly a great opportunity for Lay Marianists to engage with others in their area to support the continued growth and formation of both communities and individual Lay Marianists. It is a very relational role and would be a way to offer leadership to the Lay Branch of the Marianist Family.

Would you, or someone you know, be interested in assisting MLC-NA in Mary's mission by serving as an Area Rep? Reps are needed for the Midwest Region (Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky) and for the Virtual Marianist Lay Communities. If you or if someone you know might be interested, please fill out this Nomination Form. If you have questions, please reach out to MLC-NA's Area Rep Coordinator at

Invitation: SM Province-Directed Spirit of Saragossa Retreat
The Spirit of Saragossa Retreat invites retreatants into the transformative atmosphere that Father Chaminade experienced during his three-year exile in Saragossa, Spain. This is a week-long silent, directed retreat for Marianist laity and religious who seek to confirm and strengthen their commitment to living the Marianist charism. The retreat will be held from Sunday, June 13, 2021 (5:00 PM) to Saturday, June 19, 2021 (concluding at 1:00) at the Bergamo Center in Dayton, Ohio. Please find more information and directions on how to register for this retreat on this flyer.
Marianists in Action
Ashely Davidson, a committed Lay Marianist in the Northeast US, has been spending her free time helping senior citizens in New York and New Jersey obtain appointments for their Covid vaccine. In just one recent week, she assisted 67 seniors! We are so moved by Ashley's Marianist faith in action and by how her efforts have impacted the lives, circumstances, and hope for so many seniors in her community.

Do you know of any other #MarianistsInAction that we can highlight in our newsletter? How are you and the Marianists you know living the charism in action today? Let's share the good works we are doing and continue to be Jesus' hands and feet on Earth!

Your donations directly support the work of the Leadership Team, Formation,
administrative and staff cost, and our financial commitment to other Marianist organizations like MSJC and the IO-MLC.

Please consider how your time, talent, and treasure can further the mission of the Marianist Family. Contribute today and THANK YOU!
MLC-NA Leadership Council and Area Representatives
Click on the Leadership Council member's title and Area Rep's name to email.
MLC-NA Leadership Council

Margy Lisjak
Abbey Saurine

Paul Combest

LeeAnn Meyer

Rob Brodrick

Caitlin Cipolla-McCulloch

Fr. Ted Cassidy, SM

Marceta Reilly

Luke Horner

Kelly Welling

Sarah Gray
Area Representatives

Southeast (FL, NC)

Northeast (PA, NY, NJ, MD, VA)

To be determined
Central States (CO, IL, KS, NE, MO, WI) 


West Coast (CA, OR, WA)


Canada (French-Speaking)

Virtual Communities
To be determined