It seems to be a rather universal experience – that melody of music, that scene from a favorite movie, that phrase by a beloved author in a treasured book – that which has caught and held our attention somehow comes to connect with a lived experience. The line that has stayed with me over the years is from Virtues For Mission, by Father Joe Lackner, SM:

Because of the way Father Chaminade read Scripture and tradition, he believed the Incarnation was to be an ongoing experience in every age. God intended for the Word to become flesh in every generation, and Mary was to play a pivotal role in each successive incarnation, just as she had in the first one. This continuing incarnation configures all the elements of Marianist spirituality.

This past July there were three significant meetings within the Marianist Family that reflect these words of Father Joe, “in every age.” First, there was the General Chapter of the Marianist Sister held in Rome. Convened every five years this international assembly of leadership and elected sisters gathers to review the current status of the Order, do some specific planning for the next five years, and elect the members to the next General Administration. Secondly, also in Rome, was the General Leadership Assembly of the Society of Mary. Held between General Chapters, this Assembly examines current trends within the Society of Mary and within the Church, and begins planning for the next General Chapter, which will be held in Rome in the summer of 2024.

The third significant meeting this past July was the eighth International Lay Marianist Assembly held in Madrid, Spain. Meeting every four years, this gathering reviews the regional progress on goals formed at the previous Lay Assembly, sets goals for Marianist laity for the next four years, and elects leadership on the international and regional levels. Reviewing reports from these three important Marianist meetings I am reminded of the words of Father Lackner, “Father Chaminade believed the Incarnation was to be an ongoing experience. God intended the Word to become flesh in every generation, and Mary was to play a pivotal role in each successive incarnation.” And I am greatly encouraged!

Bro. Tom Redmond, S.M.
Spiritual Advisor for MLC-NA

Reflection in memory of AJ Wagner
Lay Marianist, former Chair of MLC-NA

The most important hour is always the present.
The most significant person is precisely the one sitting across from you right now.
The most necessary work is always love.
- Meister Eckhart

I read this quote on Facebook recently and immediately thought – that describes how AJ lived each day! It brought to mind his soulful eyes that twinkled in delight just to be near another person. Many of us have been in his presence and felt the depth of his love and his joy of living. AJ showed me how simple, and yet how profoundly important, it is to be present to our neighbors. Not in a superficial way, but in a way that clearly tells each person they are valued, they are loved, they are important.

I participated in the MSP2.0 program offered through the North American Center for Marianist Studies (NACMS) with AJ, and Joan, in 2018-19. Our topic was “The Mother of Jesus is Here: Building Today's Marian Church.” AJ was working on a children’s story to convey Mary’s love for our world and us. He wanted to give our children a simple story that would touch their hearts. He hoped to help them see how Mary’s love brought Jesus into our world. How her love could be the way we too could bring Christ to the world. He wrote of her willingness to say “yes” without knowing what that might mean, he wrote of her sacred love and he wrote of how we are all connected since the beginning of creation through that love. AJ wrote:

She is Mary, who would love God like no other,
A whole heart, whole mind, whole being
Love – A strong Love, A mother’s love.

AJ lived Mary’s love with each of us. AJ showed us how to be the Marian Face of the Church.

We are so very blessed to have had AJ’s presence in our Marianist Family. I will miss him but I know that AJ will be with me each time I encounter another person with the unconditional love of Mary.   

Rest in peace, AJ.

Chair, MLC-NA

MLC-NA is seeking nominations for the Chair Elect and Head of Education for the MLC-NA Leadership Council. The Head of Education serves a 3-year term that begins January 2023. The Chair Elect serves one year as Chair Elect (2023) then assumes the Chair position for 3 years beginning January 2024. Position descriptions are contained in the newly revised Bylaws (pending vote by membership).

Use the Nomination Form (link) to submit a nomination for yourself or another Lay Marianist. Anyone in the Marianist Family can submit a nomination.

Submit nominations at:

Nominations will be accepted through October 15, 2022, with voting to follow October 17-November 1, 2022. Terms begin January 2023.

Retreat Opportunity!
The Marianist Visitation State Community invites you to join their intergenerational autumn retreat at Bergamo on October 21st—22nd, in-person or virtually. The retreat theme is “Our Call to Be Healed and to Heal”. Please click below for a letter of invitation and the schedule. You will find the registration form here. We warmly welcome you to gather and pray with us!

New Charter for
Marianist Family Councils
On August 15, the Marianist Family Council of North America released a new Charter for Regional Family Councils. Family Councils are an intentional collaboration of each of the branches of the Marianist Family. This new Charter, in its own words, is intended to assist the Marianist Family in each of the diverse regions of North America "implement systems of organization that best mee the cultural and historical environment where they reside."

The full report on this story can be found in Family Online. The text of the charter can be read here.

Marianist Family Dinners at UD are a Bit Hit!

Students at UD are often highly attracted to the Marianist charism and mission. However, a gap remains between student’s interest in the charism and their feelings of being invited and staying engaged with the Marianist Family after graduation. In order to help bridge this gap, there is a new initiative to host spaghetti dinner weekly on each Thursday during the first semester of this school year. The purpose of this gathering is to build relationships between UD students and the Marianist Family “beyond UD.” 

We need your help! If you live in the Greater Dayton region, please read the official invitation for more details on how to get involved.

Dinners will be held each week from 6pm-8pm at the Marianist brother’s house at 301 Kiefaber St. To volunteer for one or more evenings, please sign up here!

Prints of all three founders are available through MLC-NA's website. Additionally if you or someone you know is a Marianist educator, look for the classroom sized posters, complete with short biographies to teach students about each of these beloved saints. Additional resources include a short video interview with the artist, as she gives a brief history of iconography, her project, and the details hidden in each of these three new icons!
Business Meeting
Hear updates and vote on our revised Bylaws and Guide to Life at MLC-NA's business meeting for all members:

Saturday, Sept. 17
5pm Eastern / 2pm Pacific / 11a Hawaii

Continental Assembly
The next Continental Lay Assembly will be next summer in St. Louis! Details will be posted as they become available at:

July 21-23, 2023
Sheraton Westport Plaza Hotel
St. Louis, MO
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

Grissel Benitez-Hodge

Bro. Tom Redmond, SM

Marceta Reilly

Kelly Welling

Luke Horner

Rob Brodrick
Area Representatives

Southeast (FL, NC)

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

Midwest (OH, KY, IN)
Central States (CO, IL, KS, NE, MO, WI) 


West Coast (CA, OR, WA)


Canada (French-Speaking)

Virtual Communities