September 05, 2019 Edition

I had every intention of observing this summer’s social justice module from the sidelines to take notes for next summer. This is the second year of the social justice fair, where we highlighted the past four module issues: immigration, death penalty, water, and human trafficking. As fate would have it, I found myself co-presenting on immigration – the one issue that is everywhere in the media today, which made me hypersensitive about everyone’s reactions to it. I was scared out of my mind, even though I wrote the module! The stars aligned because my partner was Arumi Ortiz, a student at St. Mary’s University, who signed on to be an Auxiliary Moderator just the week prior to South moderator days. I shared definitions & statistics. I talked about Catholic Social Teaching. Arumi brought it to life through personal stories of people she knows. At the end of each session, we asked participants to share a word describing how they were feeling: mad, angry, helpless, frustrated . Then came along “ hopeful .” I had to ask, “Did you say ‘hopeful’?” Yes – HOPEFUL.

That is a word that I left the summer program feeling. Amidst all of the negative things they heard in that session, they were able to see good. We’re living in a very confusing time. Many people are angry. Many are confused, but the fact that our LIFErs feel a sense of hope encourages me to feel the same. Lesson learned LIFErs. Lesson learned – thank you!
LIFE Central, Pacific & South Alumni serving LIFE South
2019 Summer Program - Soul on Fire
This summer 181 students gathered from across the United States to participate in the summer programs. Our theme song for the year is “Soul on Fire” by Third Day , really resonated with the LIFErs. From day 1, they all jumped into each activity with enthusiasm, and when they left, they were excited to get their MLCs going at their schools and parishes. Our moderators are the best, and without them, LIFE would not be successful with the LIFE Teams return home. Click on the YouTube link below to see highlights from the summer programs.
LIFE Alumni in the Spotlight - Marianist Young Adult Assistants
Every summer members of the regional coordinating teams change. Some teams are made up entirely of educators. Other teams include professionals in health care and social service organizations. What is a true blessing is when LIFE alumni return to serve the summer program, whether as Marianist Young Adult Assistants (MYAs), auxiliary moderators, night chaperones, or coordinating team members. Our alumni are an integral part of each summer program. They return for different reasons, but the resonating message from all of the is "I just wanted to give back."
Amelia Imada – MYA LIFE Pacific
LIFE Pacific 2014; St. Anthony School (HI)
When I first attended Pacific LIFE as a student back in 2014, I remember wanting to become a Marianist LIFE Adult (MYA) when I entered college, and I was so blessed to be able to serve as one this past summer. At my first summer at LIFE I grew closer to God and made many friends who were unashamed to speak about their faith. The community we became during that week was welcoming and supportive. The proram was filled with fun and memories that shaped who I am today. I came back as a MYA this past summer to Pacific LIFE because I wanted to foster the same climate for younger students and encourage them to grow in their faith.

Read more of Amelia's reflection here
Emmy Hamilton
LIFE Central 2006 - Queen of Apostles Parish (OH)
11 weeks, five different roles, two regions, and countless laughs and memories. My first LIFE week was in 2006 when I attended LIFE Central as a student with Queen of Apostles Community. It was something I was interested in attending. but if I’m being honest, I only really wanted to go because my two older sisters attended. I didn’t have a strong faith life, and I wasn’t quite sure what I was getting myself into. Something happened that week that I can’t quite put into words. Maybe it was the prayer services that allowed me to feel the closest to God I’d ever felt at that point in my life. Maybe it was my small group that showed me that people could love the authentic version of myself, and I didn’t have to wear a mask for people to love and accept me. Or maybe it was the moderators, who helped lead us students in creating a community that is unlike anything else. Regardless, something about that week changed my life, and little did I know, 13 years later I would still be involved in Marianist LIFE.

Read more of Emmy's reflection here
Support Marianist LIFE

Amelia and Emmy are just a few of thousands of students enlivened by the Spirit at Marianist LIFE over the last 49 years. LIFE Alumni return as Marianist Young Adult Assistants, Staff, Coordinating Team members and school/parish Moderators year after year. The program is enriched by dedication to Marianist LIFE.

To support Marianist LIFE, please click on the image below.
LIFE Team Happenings
While it is still quite early in the academic year, LIFE Teams are already up to all good!
Archbishop Moeller – Cincinnati, OH
courtesy of Kevin Wood
Marianist LIFE and House Chaplains gathered today to plan and prepare for the year. LIFE will be meeting monthly this year, as well as joining in morning prayer before school once a week.” (Moeller Alumni Facebook post, August 16)

Chaminade Madonna – Hollywood, FL
Photos courtesy of Antonio Marí

Chaminade Madonna LIFErs serve not only their school community, but their parish communities as well.
Anna Kopsick, Giana Parenteau & Antonio Marí at Mass on August 18
Antonio, Angelina Herrero, Giana, & Anna at new student orientation on August 19
Chaminade - St. Louis, MO
Photos courtesy of Chris Shaver
Chaminade moderator, Chris Shaver, sent this in about their LIFE Team:
On the weekend of August 23, all 34 of our junior and senior Core Members, a mix of LIFE Week participants from Pacific and Central last year and Pacific and Central this year, gathered for an overnight retreat to reflect on their responsibilities, begin planning for the semester, and to grow closer together as an authentic Christian community of student leaders. We ended the retreat by hosting lunch and games with the international resident students who live on campus, putting their Marianist family spirit into action. This amazing group of guys is excited to strengthen the Chaminade community this year!
50th Anniversary Updates
50 years of Marianist LIFE means a really REALLY big celebration. The national summer program at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, TX will host hundreds of student LIFErs, their Home MLC moderators, and our amazing staff members. We are collaborating with the university on a number of projects to make this summer program truly memorable.

Some important things to note about the 50 th
Anniversary Celebration:
Marianist LIFE dates to note
  • 2020 Summer program
  • July 10-19: adult moderators
  • July 13-19: student program
  • July 18: part of the day will include doing service at sites within short walking distances to the university

LIFE Alumni Weekend
  • July 16-19, 2020
  • Open to college-age and working young adults who participated in a summer program in Central, Pacific, or South
  • Contact: Toni Mesina
MLC-NA Assembly
  • July 16-19, 2020
  • Open to Lay Marianists, including former LIFE moderators and staff members
  • For more information see MLC-NA's August newsletter
LIFE South 1979
Photo courtesy of Fr. Rich Kuhn, SM
We Need Your Photos!
If you have photos from your summer program experience that you'd like for us to share during the summer program and online, please forward them to Toni Mesina .
Meet the 2020 National Coordinating Team
Coordinator - Toni Mesina
Philadelphia, PA
The prospect of creating the coordinating team for the 50th anniversary was daunting, and I honestly did not know where to begin. I was advised to "Just imagine your dream team." Spanning all three regions, and with a variety of experience with Marianist LIFE, the 2020 National Coordinating Team is truly a blessing to this ministry. We are all looking forward to collaborating on the next summer program in the service of our LIFErs and moderators. 
Emmy Hamilton
Dayton, OH
Joey Klobas
San Francisco, CA
Nicole Trahan, FMI
Dayton, OH
Religious Life
Kim Matzen
Bellevue, NE
Antonio Marí
Hollywood, FL
Christopher Casupang
Honolulu, HI
Kevin Wood
Cincinnati, OH
Chris Cantu
Sugar Land, TX
Errol Christian
St. Louis, MO
Members of each office have different gifts that will enable all of us to work with and support each other. Please pray for us as we begin our planning for the summer. 
Read more about the Coordinating Team Members
Changemakers 2019
Chestnut Hill College – Philadelphia, PA
If you are in the Philadelphia area and are interested in service, community, & social justice, joint the Marianist Social Justice Collaborative and the Marianist Province Justice, Peace, & Integrity of Creation Office on October 13, 2019.

Click the flyer for more information.

To register, click here
Free Resources for MLCs
If your Marianist LIFE Communities need some ideas for your gatherings, please check our website for some resources meeting ideas and prayer services for you and your communities to use throughout the year. We will continue to add more resources as long as moderators and students keep sending them our way! To access this valuable information
1.     Go to our webpage:
2.     Click on “MLC resources” at the bottom of the page