Helping each other live the Gospel at home & around the world

International Organization of Marianist Lay Communities (IO-MLC) 

Region of North America, Asia, Australia, and Ireland
JULY 2014

Starting new Communities
Let Us Pray
Friday Magnificat
Via Latina


Stephen & Taylor Mackell
Forming new communities

Last month I covered some challenges that older MLCs often experience. This month I interviewed Stephen & Taylor Mackell of the Ahava Community which was formed in 2011 and went through formation with AJ & Joan Wagner. (Ahava means an outpouring of love.)I asked them how their MLC operates and what challenges the 10 members.


First a little background about Ahava's structure. 

Since about half the Ahava Community members live in the Dayton area and about half live in other cities, they "meet" by Google HangOut conference calls twice a month. One call is focused on a community issue the other is more social and allows members to catch up with each other's' lives. Leadership of the calls rotates around the group. Once a year they also have a face-to-face winter retreat. Another summer retreat is more optional and is combined with other communities that AJ and Joan have mentored. They also have "prayer partners." Two people pair up and commit to praying together by phone, email, or whatever. At the end of each month they change partners.



Although Taylor and Stephen were quick to point out that they can't speak for all younger communities, here are some challenges that they deal with as a new-ish MLC.

1. Mission: Since they only have several years under their belt, they are still figuring out what their mission is and how they can make a difference "as a community" in the world. Some members are involved in a Marianist ministry (Stephen works with the Mission of Mary Farm in Dayton and Taylor helps out on occasion) but this is not a corporate mission.

2. Geography: Since they do not all live in the same area this precludes them from having a geographically based community. 

3. Uncertainty about the future: Although the 10 current Ahava members are committed to staying together indefinitely, they are aware that life circumstances change. One member is discerning a commitment to the FMI. Another will soon be marrying a person who is not from Ahava but was in a different MLC. They will need to decide the parameters of their group. Do they stay intact, just as Ahava, or do they welcome new members?

Vogt, Susan w mug  


Susan Vogt  
Representative for N. America, Asia, Australia, Ireland


Bara, Jinius
Jinius Bara
Thank You

Mr. Jinius Bara recently concluded his service as the National Responsible for Marianist Laity of India. I, and the Marianist Family of India, thank him for his three years of service in representing Indian MLCs. He remains ready to help the new leaders who will come together soon for orientation and initial planning.


And Welcome

Sanjay Saraiya

On July 3, some members of the MLCs, SM, and FMI of India met and discussed who should be the new leaders of the Marianist Laity in India. The meeting began with prayer and then secret voting. Everyone wrote one name. We elected the one who got the most votes, Mr. Sanjay Kumar Saraiya, as our leader and the next highest vote getter, Mrs. Tara Minj, as assistant. We wish them all the best.


Sanjay Kumar Sariaya is a teacher in an SM school in Singphpur. He knows the Marianists very well and is happy and ready to render his service. 

Tara Minj is also a teacher who teaches in Ranchi where she belongs to a Ranchi MLC. She has much experience with the MLCs in Ranchi. The Ranchi area of India now has three MLCs: One in Ranchi, one in Nirmal Deep, and one in Singphpur.

Leadership Selection

In the Odisha area there are groups in Binda and Budakata. They are new and are in the learning stage. Fr. Marianus Lugun SM is the advisor for Binda and Bro. Libin Minj SM and Bro. Pratab Gurian SM for Budakata. Budakata just published its first newsletter which describes their formation, leadership, and efforts to become self-sufficient by selling candles and raising and selling chickens. Click here to read all about it.


I am very happy and pleased with all the members. They are more concerns about our leadership role. Each group needs some mentor or guide. The SM has to plan well and educate the new members. We need more learning and education in terms of becoming efficient in our mission.

Report by Fr. James Dungdung SM, India


It's hard to capture over 130 attendees in a photo, but super photographer Paul Schirmer did it.

The Continental Assembly for the Marianist Lay Network of North America (MLNNA) has just ended. For those who were there it was a wonderful experience of growth, information, inspiration, and networking. For those who were not able to take part in person, we can't replicate the hugs and networking, but we can link you to 3 important documents that were well received. 
  1. Strategic Plan: Saturday was spent explaining the new Strategic Plan and accompanying organizational improvements. Read it and be stimulated.
  2. Leadership Model: Learn how MLNNA will integrate the 3 offices of Spiritual Life, Instruction, and Temporalities into our new structure.
  3. Nomination Process: You are invited to Pray, Discern, Nominate and Vote

    Nominations will be accepted through August 17th with elections by the MLNNA membership following shortly after. Those elected will be notified by October 2, and the new terms begin immediately. Leadership in MLNNA is not just for those elected to an office, it starts with all of us recognizing who among us should be encouraged to allow their name to be put in nomination. Don't worry. There will be plenty of jobs to go around and YOU might be called upon to do one of them.

iomlc logo International Report
My regional and international report to the Assembly emphasized that although all community is local, we are better together. Read how MLNNA fits into the bigger picture of Marianist Laity around the world and a summary of the new Challenges for the International Organization of MLCs. These priorities are also incorporated into MLNNA's new Strategic Plan.

Marianist Laity officially recognized by Vatican
One item that many attendees at the Assembly did not realize is that based on our International Statutes, Marianist Lay Communities are recognized by the Vatican "as an international private association of the faithful." As such we are entitled to send two delegates to this November's Congress of Ecclesial Movements and New Communities which is sponsored by the Pontifical Council for the Laity and is held every 8 years in Rome. Our President, Felix Arqueros and I will be representing the International Organization of Marianist Lay Communities (IO-MLC). You are not only something bigger than your local Marianist commitment, you are an official part of the worldwide Catholic Church.

Question mark Who is a Lay Marianist?  - I Need Your Voice & Ideas
A subject that continues to come up on both the local, national, regional, and worldwide level is just WHO IS A LAY MARIANIST?  How does one become a lay Marianist and when does a community actually become a Marianist Lay Community. Your International Organization will be addressing this issue at our next meeting November 9-15 in Rome since it is one of our challenges from the Peru meeting. We want to be both clear about the commitment that lay Marianists make while still honoring the part of our charism about being inclusive and welcoming all. It will be a challenge to do this on an international scale while still respecting local needs. I welcome your help. Perhaps your community has developed a process for identifying when a person becomes a member. Perhaps you as an individual have strong ideas about your own commitment. Please email Susan Vogt with your ideas so I can carry them to the international meeting.
prayinghands 2
  • For Lay Marianists who are in the beginning stages of forming communities. May we support and learn from each other.
  • For the Marianist Family as we grieve the passing of our brother Paul Marshall SM, who died while visiting India with the Provincial Council. Click here to see how the Indians mourned his death.
  • For the MLCs in the St. Marc area of Haiti who are grieving the recent death of Gerard, one of their very active members.



The Marianist Movement is a collaborative effort of the Marianist Family in Cincinnati, OH. One of the key programs of the Marianist Movement here is called HELP which provides training and support to returning citizens in preparation for full time employment. The term "Returning Citizens" refers to high school drop-outs and those who have served time in prison. 

Read more:





The following articles are in the July, #234 issue, of Via Latina 22, the newsletter for the General Administration of the Society of Mary. 

-A Letter from Fr. Chaminade for today

-Completation of Diocesan Inquiry into a miracle attributed to Mother Adèle de Trenquellèon

-Second survey in Marianist Apostolic Works completed


 ENGLISH   FRANÇAIS   ESPAÑOL               日本語 (June #233) 

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