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Handbook for leaders of Marist Laity Groups - Part V - Marist Documents Father Edwin Keel SM
05 February 2023
The Fourviere Pledge is the oldest formal record we have of the intentions of those who founded the Marist family. Two of the priests who signed this pledge went on to become founders: Father Jean-Claude Colin is considered the founder of the priests and brothers and the entire Marist family, and Father Marcellin Champagnat is the founder of the Brothers of the Schools. Four of the signers—Colin, Champagnat, Etienne Terraillon, and Etienne Declas—became professed Marist priests in 1836.
 
The Beatitudes Michael Whelan sm
29 January 2023
I am puzzles by the attraction of this text. So many people love the Beatitudes. Yet it is a very difficult text to understand. Comprehend. How can the poor be blessed? How can the grieving be blessed? How can the persecuted be blessed? How can the rejected be blessed? What is happening here?
 
Mary Support of the Church at its birth Father Justin Taylor sm
26 January 2023
By Marist Father Justin Taylor sm. On July 23, 1816, at the shrine of Our Lady of Fourvière, Lyons, twelve priests and seminarians pledged themselves to found a congregation bearing the name of Mary. Those who worked for the next twenty years to carry out this promise were convinced that they were responding to a wish of the Mother of Mercy, which found expression for them in the following words: “I supported the Church at its birth; 1 shall do so again at the end of time'' (Constitutions of the Society of Mary, n. 2).
 
The Way of Obedience - PART 1 Michael Whelan sm
23 January 2023
I believe it is helpful, when we are seeking to understand and live out the Christ Life, to look for the human ground of those behaviours and practices that we would want to claim as “religious.” More specifically, what is the human ground of those ideals and practices we want to bear witness to as disciples of the Risen Lord? Searching for the human ground is no more nor less than a central implication of the Incarnation: God has chosen to enter our world in the flesh, in a given moment of history, in a particular cultural and social context. In acting in this way, God has confirmed the flesh and history and culture and society as the chosen place of our redemption.
 
New Testament words for obedience - PART 2 Michael Whelan sm
16 January 2023
In both the Hebrew of the Old Testament and the Greek of the New Testament, the words used which we translate as obey, obedience and obedient, all have a close relationship with the various words we translate as hear and listen. One scholar summarizes the use of those Greek words in the New Testament:
 
The Fading of Forgiveness Bishop Barron
31 December 2022
An article published by Tim Keller entitled The Fading of Forgiveness traces the disappearance of the thing we need most. He talks about Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela which was marked by the ethics of love, forgiveness and reconciliation. These were core pillars of the civil rights movement and compares that to todays activism which seems not to value the virtue of forgiveness as much.
 
Beginning a new church Frank McKay sm
31 December 2022
Walter Kasper rightly observed that the new recognition of thelaity’s mission in the Church is not because of the shortage ofpriests and religious, nor because of the progress of democracy,illustrated for example by parish councils. These are important butexternal factors. Nor do they operate equally throughout theChristian world. The major shift in mentality towards laity isbecause of a clearer and deeper understanding of the nature ofthe Church and its mission. Struggling to find an answer to thequestion ’What should be the basic orientation of the Marist LayMovement today,’ that is of a movement which is both Marist andlay, it seemed sensible to look in the same place where the Churchitself made its discoveries.
 
We are a totally new creation Chiara Lubich
30 December 2022
This Word of Life concludes a talk whereSt. Paul tries to explain to the Christiansin Corinth, the force behind his apostolicactivity: his immense love for Jesus. Atthe same time he wants to address a strongcall to certain members of the community whoshowed that they had not fully graspedJesus’ message. They had not understoodthat Jesus came to bring about a totalchange in their lives.
 
Why Does Evil Exist? National Geographic - Morgan Freeman
29 December 2022
Where does evil come from? Morgan sets out to understand the root of evil and how our ideas of it have evolved over the millennia. Is the devil real? From the underworld of ancient Egypt to a modern-day maximum-security prison, Morgan discovers that evil might be more than a supernatural force. The birth of religion may be inextricably tied to the need to control evil.
 
Handbook for leaders of Marist Laity Groups - Part IV - Summary of Marist Spirituality Father Edwin Keel SM
23 December 2022
Fundamental to the Marist movement is the conviction that it was Mary’s initiative which called the Society of Mary into existence. She expressed her desire in these words: “Here is what I want . . . a Society which will have my name, which will be called the Society of Mary, whose members will call themselves Marists.” It is she who chose and called the first Marists into her enterprise by giving them her name.
 
Handbook for leaders of Marist Laity Groups - Part III - In the Mind of the Founder Father Edwin Keel SM
22 December 2022
The Holy Spirit graces the Church and the world with spiritual gifts through the founders of religious movements. The ideas of these founders deserve special attention and study. This section summarizes the unique understandings and insights of the founder of the Marist family, Father Jean-Claude Colin, S.M. It is now acknowledged that his ideas especially about the Church and the laity were ahead of his time. This claim is best explained by comparing Father Colin’s writings with the teachings of Vatican II, Paul VI, and John Paul II.
 
A catholic priest responds to Mary in the TV Series The Chosen The Chosen
22 December 2022
In episode 5, we introduce one of the most celebrated and debated women in history, Mary, the mother of Christ. Catholics and evangelicals have different perspectives on Mary, and much has been misunderstood. In this clip from our episode 5 biblical roundtable (available on the Season One DVD), Dallas discusses our portrayal of Mary with Catholic Priest David Guffey and evangelical scholar Doug Huffman.
 
Handbook for leaders of Marist Laity Groups - Part II - Origins and History - Canonized Marist Saints Father Edwin Keel SM
21 December 2022
Here are some stories of the recognised saints of the Marist Family, but no doubt, as there are many more.
 
Handbook for leaders of Marist Laity Groups - Part II - Origins and History - Lay Marists of Note Father Edwin Keel SM
21 December 2022
Very little has been written about the lives of lay Marists. Yet the laity have been working with the ordained and/or vowed branches of the Marist family since before any of them were approved by the Church.
 
Handbook for leaders of Marist Laity Groups - Part II - Origins and History Father Edwin Keel SM
20 December 2022
Handbook for Leaders of Marist Laity Groups. PART II - Origins and History. This history of the early years of the Marists includes biographies of canonized Marist saints and lay Marists of note.
 
Marist Laity and the future of the church - Frank McKay sm Frank McKay sm
19 December 2022
Mary has got a place in every life. Probably got a place in all our lives to some extent. We are talking about her having a fully place. What we are talking about is her spirituality in the age we inhabit. The Marist vision and Marist spirituality is not something infused it has got to be communicated. How is it going to be communicated?
 
We are called to Trust....this Christmas Michael Whelan sm
18 December 2022
Is it possible that these representations bring to the for a beautiful dimension hide the more brutal and risk laden reality? To be including it in this situation, the situation of God. the theme of trust comes through. In a loving relationship trust comes through.
 
Marist Laity and the future of the church - Frank McKay sm Frank McKay sm
18 December 2022
It is very nice to be in Gladstone. I am aware what a missionary centre it is. Marists are a missionary congregation and it is good to reminded of this. I have spoken so far in Australia to groups of lay people. This is the first time I have spoken to all the branches of the Marist family. I was also glad to the Sisters of Mercy who taught me as a small boy in Dunedin. The Mercy Sisters draw attention to something which is very central to the Marist charism. Mary is the mother of mercy. The first Marists set out for mission father Colin gave a sermon say “we come among you however unworthy as instruments of Divine mercy”. Marists believe that our founders are gifts not only to us, but to the whole church. They are there for all of us.
 
Handbook for Leaders of Marist Laity Groups Father Edwin Keel SM
17 December 2022
This Handbook is a resource for group leaders. It is important that leaders becomethoroughly familial' with the contents, share information with other Marists, keep theHandbook intact, and assist in updates as needed.
 
9 Key Marist Documents Marist Fathers
14 December 2022
9 Key Marist Documents exploring the themes “when will the time come”, “the confraternity of both sexes living in the world”, “like a bridge”, “shine out into the church”, “a new church” etc.
 
Foundations of the Marist Sisters Marist Sisters
14 December 2022
The early development of the Marist Sisters through Jeanne Marie Chavoin and Marie Jotillon.
 
Young Adults and Marists Father Mike Flynn sm
11 December 2022
Marist Spirituality comes from Mary of Nazareth - hidden and unknown as it were - the spirit of the family at Nazareth. This can be conveyed to young people as well. We see the application of the Marist spirituality in all the branches of the Marist family.
 
Social Justice Belongs In Our Schools Sydney Chaffee
11 December 2022
For National Teacher of the Year Sydney Chaffee, teaching is a political act. She has been traveling the country urging all teachers to make social justice a central part of their mission. Talking to students about justice can't be a niche for certain kinds of teachers or certain schools. When students understand inequity and have the tools to work towards a more just world, they see why their education truly matters....
 
Old and New Testament Self-Study Marist Sisters
30 November 2022
Apostolic Life. Composed by the Marist Sisters of the Oceania Province. At the first session of the Provincial Chapter it was proposed that a self-study programme at community level be initiated in the Province. The object of the study was to examine our community life in three aspects and so deepen our awareness and understanding of our life together. These aspects were summarised under the headings of Religious and Marist life, Apostolic life , and The Cry of the Poor and Social Justice.
 
Unit 1 - Call and Mission of Moses Marist Sisters
30 November 2022
We saw Moses as God's special instrument, especially chosen and prepared. We added that God brought about a CHANGE in Moses —a purification, as time went on. We felt that in spite of his fear, he acted in faith. He could see the Hand of the Lord in his own life, e.g., in the Burning Bush.
 
Is COVID-19 an apocalyptic event? Richard Rohr ofm
29 November 2022
Apocalyptic literature from the scriptures often gets miss interpreted. Apocalyptic does not mean the “end of the world”. This is a miss interpretation. But, what the world is going through with COVID-19 is an “apocalyptic” event or a revelation. This event is an unveiling or to pull back the veil. This style of text, Apocalyptic, uses exaggerated images and metaphors. Like stars falling from the sky or the moon turning to blood in the scriptures. This is like a Steven Spielberg movie like Close Encounters or ET where suddenly you are placed in an utterly different world. What was normal before does not apply any more.
 
Movie - The Nativity New Line Cinema
26 November 2022
The Nativity (2006) is a movie depicting First Century Palestine and the context where the Gospel story begins. Anwser question questions describing this context.
 
A new life in Christ Chiara Lubich
26 November 2022
This Word of Life contains the fundamental law of all Christian life. Through baptism, the world and sin no longer have a hold on us. We are now living a new life in which Christ dwells in us and we live for him.
 
The Life of Pi Father Jim McKeon
20 November 2022
Yann Martel’s novel the Life of Pi tells the story of Pi. A young man is the only human survivor when a ship full of zoo animals sinks in the middle of the ocean. Pi finds himself on a life raft with a hyena, zebra and a tiger. The hyena eats the zebra. The tiger eats the hyena and pi fears for his life. His aim was to tame and to befriend the tiger. Over many months they are adrift together at sea. Encountering many adventures and their survival is a tale of awe and wonder.
 
Gospel - Not one stone will be left.... Michael Whelan sm
14 November 2022
There is something in us all which yearns to settle down and be at home. This is a fundamental yearning to be in control. To feel secure because we know what is happening. The message of the Gospel actually runs into that. We are pilgrims. In our Catholic tradition the Church entered the Second Vatican Council with an arrival mentality. We had the answers. However, from the Second Vatican Council it became a journeying church.
 
Quotes from Father Craig Larkin sm from the Boston Marist Laity Conference Father Craig Larkin sm
09 November 2022
The experience of the conference is like a wheel - we want to move forward. The hub, the centrepoint is the person of Jesus - we want to be disciples of Jesus and the person who can teach us best how to be a disciple is Mary.
 
What does recontextualisation mean for the Church and Religious Education? Andrew Dumas
06 November 2022
Within the Religious Education high school classroom in Australia most students come from a plural context with different faith perspectives, values and life experiences. McCrindles research states “Overall, only 9% of Christians actively practise and regularly attend a place of worship” (2022). That means out of a class of 28 students you might have 2 or 3 students who regularly attend church. This is well outside the mono Christian culture and context that existed in the past generations where there was high church attendance and a prevailing Christian world view that encouraged church attendance.
 
Humility for Marists Father Jean Coste sm
05 November 2022
Humility is a key virtue which Marist Founder John Claude Colin often writes about. For Marists we do not take on the Stoic and Greek ideal of humility, but seek a Christian humility who seeks to live in relationship with God and other people.
 
A Gospel of Inclusivity Michael Whelan sm
01 November 2022
A beautiful and challenging theme of inclusivity. The story of Zacchaeus is a little tac collector because he is little he climbs a tree. He wants to see Jesus. To catch a glimpse of him says Luke. It is Jesus who says Zacchaeus and invites himself to Zacchaeus home. This provokes quiet a reaction from all the onlookers. All the onlookers grumbled as it says he is going to eat in the house of a sinner. Do you find Zacchaeus an attractive person? Honestly. Would you think it good that Jesus would show special interest in this man who is taking money from his fellow citizens in order to pay the Roman oppressor? I think not. It is a difficult man to like this Zacchaeus. May it is not a question of liking. Maybe there is something deeper called for here.
 
The Real Presence Father John Thornhill SM
30 October 2022
Do we accept the real presence of the Eucharist? The faith of the church from the beginning becomes the Body and Blood of the Lord. The Second Vatican Council tried to bring a balance. The Council recognised many ways Jesus is present. Jesus is present in the community “Where two or three are gathered in my name”. But this is not the Eucharistic presence. Jesus is present in the scriptures. God is the eternal Word. “In the beginning of the Word and the Word was with God”. Jesus of truly present in the scripture. Jesus is truly present in the pastoral presence. We cannot go it alone. Finally, Jesus is present in the sacraments. Saint Augustine said, “it does not matter if it is Judas who baptises or Peter who baptises”. Why? Because it is Christ who baptises.
 
Community of Memory and Hope – Part 2 - Colin - Mythic Mediator Father Gerard Hall sm
25 October 2022
Myth inspires creative vision and dynamic action. It is not a monolithic and closed system; but a beckoning forth, an opening out, within a mythic horizon which liberates the individual, integrates experience and provides a unifying paradigm for life. John Claude Colin's development of the Marist root-metaphor in terms of eschatological vision has been little understood. This is because 'the communication of a vision is not a showing (of pictures - of reality) but a communion (in seeing - the universe): in other words it is simply and profoundly a myth.
 
Community of Memory and Hope – Part 1 - Hermeneutics Father Gerard Hall sm
20 October 2022
The critical issue being explored in this paper is the following: how canwe understand the past, and especially the Marist charism, in a way which engages us in the present and gives life to our future? Clearly, this is a matter of more than academic interest as a reading of the Superior General’s Report on the Society demonstrates.
 
History of the Marist Family Father Pat Primeaux sm
14 October 2022
Father Pat presented a brilliant PowerPoint production, complete with music, to illustrate his own understanding of the Marist Vision in today's world. With powerful images of St Peter's in Rome, and people in various situations he presented the image of the Patriarchal Church where love equaled obedience. He then went on to present the Marian Church where love equaled mercy which he illustrated with another image of St Peter's taken from a different angle. In between these two images is that of the Simeon Church - the contemplative Church.
 
Video - The Story of John Claude Colin - Part 1 Marist Laity Australia
13 October 2022
A cartoon of the story of John Claude Colin. Part 1. The first part in John Claude Colin's life one of the founders of the Marist Society. John Claude Colin is born in France in 1790 at the same time the French Revolution is breaking out. From this Chaos and the later wars brought on by Napoleon, Mary will invite the first men and women to found the Society of Mary. The original vision was for a multiple branched society even though at the time in the 1800s the church could not conceive of lay people, brothers, fathers and sisters being in one group. The original vision given by Mary had a multiple branch society in mind. Soon the early Marists would pledge themselves and be invited to go on mission. Both in the remote regions of the mountains of France and also to the outer islands of the Pacific. Soon they will go out beyond their comfort zones for Mary.
 
Making the Whole World Marist Dr Andrea Pichlmeier
09 October 2022
Our aim is to make the whole world Marist. If I said this to theologians or to anyone else in Germany they would frown. In German the word 'Marist' ('maristisch') sounds rather strange, if not ideological, like every word in German ending in 'istisch'. Even my spiritual director told me last week that he knew there was a religious order called 'Marists' but their name did not make him think of Mary. As students we used to make fun of the name by adding an x which turned 'Marist'
 
How can Christian Churches respond to rapidly declining numbers? Andrew Dumas
06 October 2022
Christian churches have until recently used a reconfessional approach to problem of declining church numbers. This video puts forward a new approach of recontextualising how we engage with others. Hermeneutics are important. But the question is - which one will we use. - Studies of Religion. Post 1945.
 
Love for the Cross Chiara Lubich
26 September 2022
As for me the only thing I can boast aboutis the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom the world is crucified to me and I to the world (Galations 6:14) For Paul there is no greater suffering than to see. some of his recent converts repudiate and denigrate the cross of Christ in everyday life.
 
In the Way of Mary - A companion for the Journey Marist Brothers
08 September 2022
This resource 'In the way of Mary – a companion for the journey' is a form of the review of the day based on this defining moment. It is an adaptation of a long held spiritual practice within our faith tradition. For those who share in the Marist charism and spirit we believe that it will offer special support, insight and grace.
 
Refounding of the society of Mary John Thornhill SM
07 September 2022
One of the remarkable things that are taking place in Christian awareness today is the way in which we are being forced to look beyond familiar categories and to own again the elemental realities of Christian faith and life. One of the things that we are rediscovering is the importance of celebration, as an essential element of our human and Christian existence. When we celebrate an event or an occasion, we enter together into the deeper reality of our life: to know its wonder, its joy, its inspiration, and its challenges: Because it is a meeting with the deeper realities of life, a celebration always has an undercurrent of profound seriousness, even a margin of pathos. I am profoundly conscious of this as I try to find words appropriate to this Marist celebration.
 
Discernment in the life of Jeanne Marie Chavoin Sister Marie de la Croix, S.M.
14 August 2022
The early Christian community was a faith community, sharing a common belief in a resurrected Jesus, a loving Father and an empowering Spirit. So strong was this belief and the power it had to draw its members together in true communion that it be­ came a counter-cultural and prophetic force, able to attract new members from every class of people and race, holding them together in a life of mutual love and service.

Every religious community modelled on the early Church com­munity is called to be a faith community with these and other similar characteristics.
 
Will our Marist way live on in tomorrows church? John Thornhill SM
12 August 2022
By Marist Father John Thornhill sm. In his letter to mark the Great Jubilee of the year 2000 (8 Dec. 1999), Joaquin Fernandez suggested that, if the Society of Mary is to meet the challenges which lie ahead, we must be prepared 'to deconstruct all those certainties (and they are many) - material, intellectual .and spiritual which we have built up with great effort over a long period of time'. These 'certainties', he continued, 'prevent us from discerning the newness of God, to be free to proclaim a message of true hope and to place ourselves, in coherent fashion, in the midst of the world'.
 
The Early Church in Australia Marist Laity Australia
09 August 2022
Early development of the Catholic Church in Australia for Religious Education and Studies of Religion. Topics covered - First Settlement, Anglican Church by Force, Period of Persecution, The early Catholic Church in Australia, James Dixon, castle hill rebellion, Father Jeremiah O’Flynn, and Influence of the Convict System.
 
A New Generation of Church - In the Way of Mary Bishop Vincent Long
14 July 2022
Like Mary, we are called to leave our comfort zone and to be in the peripheries in order to offer nearness and proximity. We are sent to the strong and the weak, the wholesome and the broken. We are to be a “Malcolm in the Middle” who occupies in betwixt and between, liminal, peripheral and precarious places. Like Jesus in his ministry among the sick and the lost, we are called to meet God in the most unlikely people and places. Like him who often immersed himself at the margins, we too must be in that frontier space. It is that precarious liminal space where the true cost of our discipleship is counted, because we dare to walk with the Samaritans of our time, just like Jesus did before us.
 
Good Samaritans and Good Boundaries Father Jim McKeon
11 July 2022
From the time we are in kindergarten, we can understand the message of Jesus' parable of the 'Good Samaritan'. That we are to be like that Samaritan and help out our neighbours in their needs. Like so many like the Good Samaritan there are layers and levels that we can draw deeper understanding.
 
Joan Chittister on renewing community in a changing world Joan Chittister
22 June 2022
Joan Chittister found her community as a teenager, seventy years ago, when she joined the Benedictine sisters in Pennsylvania. For decades she has devoted herself to renewing community in and beyond the Catholic church. Her fierce advocacy for women has put her at odds with some within the hierarchy, but as a spiritual writer she had brought the insights of her tradition to a wider world.
 
A Marian Church Father Francious Marc, sm
19 June 2022
I would like to plead for a Marian church; not for a church which multiplies processions and blesses huge statues ... rather a church which 'lives the Gospel after the manner of Mary'. The Marian Church follows Mary into the mountains, going off with her to encounter life; she visits men and women, and, though things may seem to be sterile, she is on the watch for what is coming to birth, for possibilities, for the life which beats in things.
 
Community for mission - Fr John Larsen sm Father John Larsen sm
19 June 2022
“Community for mission” seems to be encoded in our Marist-DNA. From our very earliest days – we celebrate St. Marcellin this Monday, June 6 – Marists have evangelized from within Christian communities, with Mary at our heart. “We have no other model than the early church” Father Jean-Claude says. This Pentecost on Sunday, June 5, challenges us to be faithful to this vision of Mary at the heart of the community, sent out to preach the Good News of Jesus Christ. There are always some Marists who live on their own for very good reasons. However, our Founder always encouraged us to live in communities for mission, as he himself had done in Cerdon and in the mountains of the Bugey.
 
A Lay Womans Reflection on Marist Spirituality and the interface with Spiritual Direction Bev McDonald
11 June 2022
I have recently completed two years formation as a spiritual director with Spiritual Growth Ministries (New Zealand) and in that time my understanding and experience of spiritual direction expanded enormously. The formation experience did not change my spirituality, which is essentially Marist, but added depth and integration to it. In this paper I offer a taste of Marist spirituality, particularly as experienced by laity today and reflect on how that spirituality sustains and develops my direction ministry.
 
As Mary did - Part 45. Marcellin Champagnat Marist Laity Australia
06 June 2022
Marist Spirituality. Marcellin Champagnat
 
Virtues of Nazareth Craig Larkin sm
05 June 2022
At Nazareth, even before the birth of the Church, the fullness of the Kingdom of God existed in the life of a simple family of ordinary people. Two believers gathered around Christ, and their only thought was the will of the Father.
 
Gospel Reflection - Daring to doubt Father Jim McKeon
25 April 2022
When something seems too good to be true it often is. We see a lot of this on the internet. That $50 iphone. The beautiful stranger who wants to find true love with you or the Nigerian prince who wants to give you one million dollars. We are rightly sceptical and doubtful about such things because they are usually not true. It must have seen too good to be true for those first disciples 2000 years ago who were heart broken at the death of Jesus when they suddenly found in alive again. It was heart for those who saw him face to face such as the disciples on the road to Emmaus. Mary Magdalene and the original apostles. It was hard for them to accept that Jesus had risen again. Let alone poor old Thomas who was out of the room when Jesus came back. We often call Thomas doubting Thomas. We need to cut him some slack and call him 'reasonable sceptical Thomas'.
 
Good Friday Father Kevin OShea
15 April 2022
As we listen to John’s account of the actual dying of Jesus, we feel the mystery of it all. We would love to have been there. We would love to know what his last moments were like. John tries to tell us in his gospel. Before we think about what he says, we need to look at what other gospel writers have said about those last moments of Jesus. They all give a different account of it. John has Jesus dying in complete silence. Mark has him dying with a loud cry. Silences and shouting: the silence of Jesus, the last cry of Jesus. We hear both of them. And we are there in the midst of them.
 
Palm Sunday Michael Whelan sm
09 April 2022
Jesus is led like a lamb to the slaughter. We are made in the image and likeness of this vulnerable God. Have you ever thought that being vulnerable is part of the essence of being a fulfilled human being? That is very counter intuitive for Western cultures. We seek fulfilment in the opposite of being in control. This deep primitive desire to be in control is actually an instinct for fascism. We find in Jesus a quality of venerability the primary antidote to the instinct of fascism. Rowan Williams says 'it is in the cross that we see in the revelation of what it is that characterises Gods personal being'
 
Love Marist Laity Australia
09 April 2022
Katie Hood reveals the five signs you might be in an unhealthy relationship -- with a romantic partner, a friend, a family member -- and shares the things you can do every day to love with respect, kindness and joy. 'While love is an instinct and an emotion, the ability to love better is a skill we can all build and improve on over time,' she says.
 
Mercy Begins with Me - Part 1 Ra Chapman sm
09 April 2022
On 28th November, Marist Laity Australia held its November Reflection day, leading us into the season of Advent. Fr Ray Chapman, a Marist priest who has given MLA such wonderful support over many years, was asked to facilitate this day. Fr Ray will be finishing his time as Parish Priest of St Patrick’s Church Hill at the end of this year. Our hopes were answered when he graciously agreed to give us this parting gift.

Ray chose as the theme, Mercy begins with ME, in step with the Jubilee Year of Mercy beginning on 8th December, the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Some 50 people turned up, many of whom were wanting to tap into Ray’s wisdom before he leaves for France.
 
Stages of Moral Development Marist Laity Australia
27 March 2022
When a person chooses to ignore a religious view such as a Catholic view on sexual ethics, are they operating out of a lack of basic needs rather than seeing the higher needs? Debate and explain.
 
Dreaming of the Ocean Father Jim McKeon
27 March 2022
If you want to get a man to build a boat, you can teach him to saw planks of wood and hammer nails or you can teach him to dream of the ocean. The first way will get the job done. The boat will get built, but it might never leave the shore. But the person who dreams of the ocean, who yearns for the open seas will find a way to get the skills, to get the tools and get the equipment to build the boat. Then they will launch out into the deep and sail out into the horizon.
 
Marist Spirituality and Spiritual Direction Bev McDonald
27 March 2022
I have recently completed two years formation as a spiritual director with Spiritual Growth Ministries (New Zealand) and in that time my understanding and experience of spiritual direction expanded enormously. The formation experience did not change my spirituality, which is essentially Marist, but added depth and integration to it. In this paper I offer a taste of Marist spirituality, particularly as experienced by laity today and reflect on how that spirituality sustains and develops my direction ministry. As a third generation Pakeha (European New Zealander) I have a deep respect for tikanga Maori (Maori culture) and te reo (language) as a precious taonga (treasure) for New Zealanders. When used I will translate Maori to English in brackets.
 
Bearers of Hope - Sr Marie Nash sm Sister Marie Nash
26 March 2022
In this present period of the beginning of the Third Millennium we wish to turn in a special way to her (Mary) the one who in the night of the Advent expectation began to shine like a true Morning Star, for just as this star, together with the dawn precedes the rising of the sun, so Mary from the time of her Immaculate Conception preceded the coming of the Saviour Her presence in the midst of Israel a presence so discreet as to pass almost unnoticed by the eyes of her contemporaries shone very clearly before the Eternal One who had associated the hidden daughter of Zion with the plan of salvation embracing the whole history of humanity.
 
The Annunciation Nicholas Howlett fms
26 March 2022
We remember how the power of God was made known in the conception of Jesus. The depth of God's love was revealed in a human life - Mary. Mary was the real flesh and blood woman who dared to say yes to God's call, freely and unconditionally. The Word became flesh in Mary and Mary continued to enflesh that loving Word in her everyday existence. We rejoice that Mary responded to God's call and she is an exemplary model for us in our path of discipleship.
 
Where does Marist Spirituality begin Marist Fathers
20 March 2022
Marist Spirituality is about taking people where they are at. This is one of the strengths of the Marist Spiritual approach. It does not try to drag them kicking and screaming. It is about accepting in the first place. It is about building a relationship. It is about trying to understand a persons world view and respecting it.
 
Time to Repent Father Jim McKeon
20 March 2022
What does Jesus mean when he says 'Unless you repent you will all perish as they did?'. Homily for 3rd Sunday of Lent Year C
 
Father Yvan Mathieu - Introduction to Genesis Father Yvan Mathieu
19 March 2022
An introduction to the book of Genesis and the Bible with Marist Father Yvan Mathieu.
 
Lectio Reflection - 3rd Sunday in Lent - Luke 13:1-9 Bishop David Walker, Anthony Maher and Father John Frauenfelder
19 March 2022
This important Gospel is about repentance. There is a contrast between between human mortality and what one expects after death. What is being contrast between just dying and dying with repentance. The point being made is that at times Israel has lacked repentance. There is a patience of God which allows people time to repent. But there is an urgency.
 
Marist Laity Australia Guidelines 2008 Marist Laity Australia
18 March 2022
Marist Laity Australia is one contemporary expression of the lay branch of the Marist Family tree. This family is composed of Religious Sisters, Missionary Sisters, Brothers and priests as well as lay men, women and children. All Marists share the one spirit of Mary and all share in the task of doing her work.
 
Conscience Marist Laity Australia
16 March 2022
Conscience is that part of us which helps us make decisions. But what helps shapes our conscience? What forms our conscience? As we explore the nature of conscience we become more aware of factors which helps us to make better decisions.
 
Pope Francis Lenten Message 2022 Pope Francis
13 March 2022
Lent is a favourable time for personal and community renewal, as it leads us to the paschal mystery of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. For our Lenten journey in 2022, we will do well to reflect on Saint Paul’s exhortation to the Galatians: “Let us not grow tired of doing good, for in due time we shall reap our harvest, if we do not give up. So then, while we have the opportunity (kairós), let us do good to all” (Gal 6:9-10).
 
Natural Law Theory All about philosophy
11 March 2022
Natural Law is a broad and often misapplied term tossed around various schools of philosophy, science, history, theology, and law. Indeed, Immanuel Kant reminded us, 'What is law?' may be said to be about as embarrassing to the jurist as the well-know question ‘What is Truth?’ is to the logician.
 
Reflection on Jesus in the Desert Father Jim McKeon
05 March 2022
Father Jim gives an insightful reflection on the Gospel reading of Jesus in the desert and the temptation. He starts by linking to the super hero character development then leads quickly into the story of Jesus in the desert. The temptation by the devil tries to make Jesus into something he is not. Do we know scripture to rebuke our false thinking? Do we stay no to these temptations?
 
Entering the Desert of Lent - Bishop Barron Bishop Barron
02 March 2022
With the beginning of Lent right around the corner, Bishop Barron talks about this ancient period of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving in preparation for Easter, and offer several recommendations on how to have a more spiritually powerful Lent.
 
1963 - Pacem In Terris Pope John XXIII
02 March 2022
In 1963 the cuban missile crisis between communist Russia and the United States saw the threat of nuclear war at its highest point. Pope John XXIII played a pivotal role resolving the conflict between Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev and President John F Kennedy. Shortly after, John release Pacem In Terris months before he would die. This document promoted peace in all parts of our lives.
 
As Mary did. Part 50. A tree with several branches Marist Laity Australia
13 February 2022
Spirituality of the Marist Family. A tree with several branches
 
As Mary did. Part 49. Little Children Marist Laity Australia
05 February 2022
Spirituality of the Marist Family. Little Children
 
As Mary did. Part 48. A family matter Marist Laity Australia
30 January 2022
Spirituality of the Marist Family. A family matter
 
As Mary did - Part 47 - My life is not very hidden Marist Laity Australia
26 January 2022
Marist Spirituality. My life is not very hidden
 
As Mary did - Part 46. A new church Marist Laity Australia
21 January 2022
Spirituality of the Marist Family. A new church
 
An Introduction to Marist Laity Marist Laity
20 January 2022
Marists seek simplicity in life. Marists search tochoose the essentials in our own life. Today, welive in an information rich world which can oftenblock out God’s word and will. A more simplelife style enables a freedom to let go of the thingswhich prevent us from striving for and findingwhat is most important.
 
As Mary did. Part 44. Shine Out into the Church Marist Laity Australia
18 January 2022
Marist Spirituality. Shine Out into the Church
 
Book - Like a Bridge - Part 1 Marist Laity Australia
18 January 2022
A meditation, and a reflection on the book 'Like a Bridge'.
 
As Mary did. Part 43. Like a Bridge Marist Laity Australia
17 January 2022
Marist Spirituality. Like a Bridge
 
Living Lifes Roller Coaster Father Paul Cooney sm
16 January 2022
A Marist Perspective from Father Paul Cooney sm
 
Do what ever he tells you - Anne Dooley Anne Dooley
16 January 2022
Being invited by Maria Baden and the Marist Laity Committee to offer the keynote address at this inaugural Marist Laity Conference in Australia is a great privilege and I thank them for this wonderful opportunity to be involved in the conference in this way. We all bring a wealth of life experience and faith and are Marists 'to the core' of our being. One of the main hopes for this conference is to share our Marist Spirit with others and this morning I hope to begin that process by sharing something of my own story. Alongside this, in breaking open the gospel story of the Wedding at Cana we will be tapping into the story of Mary and, ultimately, the story of her Son, Jesus as we are called to 'Do whatever he tells you.'
 
As Mary Did - Part 42. The confraternity of the faithful in the world Marist Laity Australia
15 January 2022
Spirituality of the Marist Family. The confraternity of the faithful in the world
 
Bishop Dons Christmas Message and perseverance Bishop Don Bolen
10 January 2022
Getting ready for Christmas this year, many have found themselves needing to find the courage and resilience to keep going, to come to a place of gratitude and joy. I came across an old story on the internet a few days ago, from the American author Grace Paley, recounting how her elderly bedridden father shared with her a word of how to persevere when growing old, and his main advice was this: “when you get up in the morning you must take your heart in your two hands. You must do this every morning.... Talk softly (to it)... You can whisper also, Remember, remember.”
 
As Mary did - Part 41. When will the time come? Marist Laity Australia
10 January 2022
Spirituality of the Marist Family. When will the time come?
 
As Mary did - Part 40 - Marys simple and hidden life in Nazareth Marist Laity Australia
08 January 2022
Spirituality of the Marist Family. As Mary did - Part 40 - Marys simple and hidden life in Nazareth
 
Bishop Vincent Longs Christmas Message 2021 Bishop Vincent Long
05 January 2022
Jesus is the fullness of God’s revelation of love for us and for all of creation. This means that no matter who we are: male or female, black or white, straight or gay, rich or poor, high or low, citizen or refugee, God’s love embraces us and reverences us all. Jesus came down to live in a typical Middle Eastern village called Nazareth, that was home to a couple of hundred ‘country’ people. He did not decide to brandish his power, but to spend most of his time with the powerless and disenfranchised.
 
As Mary did - Part 39 - such a great spirit of humility Marist Laity Australia
03 January 2022
Spirituality of the Marist Family. As Mary did - Part 39 - such a great spirit of humility
 
Feast of the Epiphany Jeff Cavins
02 January 2022
The Feast of the Epiphany, Jeff Cavins explains how—just as the Magi were drawn to Christ—people from around the world are drawn to the gospel when we live it authentically.
 
Mother of God - January 1 Mary for Us Today - Used with Permission in 2005
01 January 2022
We celebrate the Motherhood of Mary on January 1 and it is also the World Day of Peace.
 
As Mary did - Part 38 - One Heart and One Soul Marist Laity Australia
31 December 2021
Spirituality of the Marist Family. As Mary did - Part 38 - One Heart and One Soul
 
Discipleship and the importance of listening Marist Laity Australia
30 December 2021
Discipleship and the importance of listening
 
I got lost at Christmas Fr Jim McKeon
26 December 2021
Some years ago my friend Joel took me canyoning in the Blue Mountains for a day. Canyoning is following a stream or a river following its origin up on the ridge, down through to the valley floor. We had a beautiful day of abseiling down through water falls.
 
The nativity - Will you let me love you Michael Whelan sm
25 December 2021
Human communication is frail yet full of all sorts of potential. At its best, it can be the bearer of love and affirmation, clarification and helpful facts, it can build and strengthen relationships. At its worst, it can be the bearer of hate and denigration, obfuscation and “alternate facts”, it can destroy and undermine relationships. We can use communication – whether it is through words or silence, rituals or symbols, physical gestures or facial expressions – to reveal and conceal, to cut and to heal.
 
As Mary did - Part 37 - Called to the honour of spreading the kingdom of Jesus Christ Marist Laity Australia
23 December 2021
Spirituality of the Marist Family. As Mary did - Part 37 - Called to the honour of spreading the kingdom of Jesus Christ
 
As Mary did - Part 36 - intimate union with God - practise Marist Laity Australia
20 December 2021
Spirituality of the Marist Family.As Mary did - Part 36 - intimate union with God - practise
 
As Mary did - Part 35 - intimate union with God - Theory Marist Laity Australia
19 December 2021
'Spirituality of the Marist Family.As Mary did - Part 35 - intimate union with God - Theory
 
Gathering becomes crucial to the incarnation Michael Whelan sm
19 December 2021
We are communal animals. It is in our nature to gather. It is not surprising therefore that the Incarnation manifests itself in human beings gathering. It is our faith that the gathering can become empowered and informed and shaped and led by the Holy Spirit of God. Today’s Gospel – Luke 1:39-45 – is a good example. Mary, prompted by the Angel’s message to her – “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; … And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son” (1:35-37) – goes to Elizabeth. When she greets Elizabeth, John is brought into the gathering – “he leaped in her womb”.
 
A hornets nest Michael Whelan sm
12 December 2021
In today’s Gospel – Luke 3:10-18 – a lot is happening! The crowds are pressing on John the Baptist for instructions as to what they must do. They are “filled with expectation”. This is a dangerous situation, especially with the Roman authorities hyper-alert to any signs of the Pax Romana being upset. John deflects attention from himself: “I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire”.<
 
A Call to ecological conversion and discipleship Gail Gill
10 December 2021
It is now 6 years since Pope Francis published his encyclical 'Laudatio Si' or Our Care for our Common Home. At the time it attracted world wide attention for its focus on ecology, climate, economics, and how this all impact on the poor and marginalised people.
 
Marys place in our faith The Emmaus Series - John Thornhill sm
08 December 2021
From the Church's beginnings – as the New Testament makes clear - Mary has been seen as a great sign of encouragement for believers. References to Mary, though they may seem brief, are deeply meaningful, presenting Mary as a figure of immense significance for the communities that produced these texts. St Luke, in his Gospel and Acts of the Apostles, skilfully portrays Mary as the model of discipleship, the one who 'hears the Word of God and puts it into practice'. Taking a central theme of the Scriptures, St John sees Mary as the 'woman' in God's ultimate plan, and 'mother' of the family of the disciples of Jesus.
 
Created in the image of God Marist Laity Australia
07 December 2021
The account of creation in the first chapter of Genesis is a biblical reflection on the nature of the human person as one who shares a likeness to God and reflects the image of God. Each human being is unique and is invited to share in the company of God (DV2).
 
Who are the Laity? Father John Thornhill SM
06 December 2021
This is a very complex question, but of great importance today, as the Church seeks renewal.
 
Introduction to Human Sexuality Marist Laity Australia
06 December 2021
What does it mean to human? What does it mean to be human? What is human Sexuality?
 
Joys and Hopes Michael Whelan sm
05 December 2021
Pope Paul VI at the end of the Second Vatican Council said “in previous times, in the past and in the present century, that church was absent and cut off from human culture”. This is a damming thing to say. Siege mentality that was often used.
 
Reasons to be afraid Michael Whelan sm
28 November 2021
Central to our thinking about the Christian life is the Incarnation – God’s being in the flesh. That is both a historical fact – which includes the political, the cultural, the social and the physical – and a theological fact. The reality of the Incarnation means, amongst other things, that we encounter God in history not outside history. We must resist any temptation to avoid the historical facts of life. Sometimes the Church has been regarded as some kind of metaphysical reality that stands outside history
 
Feast of Christ the King Michael Whelan sm
21 November 2021
Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I?
 
Belief and Incoherence Michael Whelan sm
14 November 2021
In today’s Gospel – Mark 13:24-32 – we have an example of apocalyptic literature, a particular articulation of our shared belief. The English word, “apocalyptic”, comes from the Greek word, apokaluptein meaning “uncover” or “reveal”. The central focus of Christian apocalyptic literature – indeed of all Christian witness – is the uncovering or revealing of the glory of God in Jesus who is the Christ. We might reasonably think of today’s Gospel text as an incoherent articulation of the ineffable.
 
Religion is about relationships Michael Whelan sm
07 November 2021
Our relationships with ourselves is where we start. But, do not start get into self deception. Who I am and what is happening in my life is crucial. To myself and that of the world at large. Pope Francis’ Laudatio Si has suggested we have tended to ignore our relationship with creation, or even abuse it. But religion helps to give us structure to enable relationships With God, self, other human beings, and the world at large. When religion forgets this primary purpose It becomes an ideology or an idea. Ideology is about imposing a world view. But, when religion maintains its soul, Dialogue is natural. Hospitality is natural. Reaching out is natural.
 
Great listening Dadirri - Hear O Israel Michael Whelan sm
31 October 2021
In 1987, an aboriginal elder from the Daly River, Miriam Ungunmerr-Baumann, addressed a liturgy conference in Tasmania. The content of that presentation struck a deep resonance with her audience. Miriam began: “What I want to talk about today is another special quality of my people. I believe it is the most important. …. It is perhaps the greatest gift we can give to our fellow Australians. In our language, this quality is called ‘dadirri’. It is inner, deep listening, and quite, still awareness. ‘Dadirri’ recognizes the deep spring that is inside us. We call on it and it calls to us. This is the gift that Australia is thirsting for. It is something like what you call ‘contemplation’. When I experience ‘dadirri’ I am made whole again. I can sit on the river bank or walk through the trees; even if someone close to me has passed away, I can find my peace in this silent awareness. There is no need of words”.
 
Seeing with the eye of the heart Michael Whelan sm
23 October 2021
On the evening of 28 October 1958, Angelo Roncalli stepped onto the balcony at St Peter’s as the newly elected Pope John XXIII. Three hundred thousand people in St Peter’s Square greeted him. Later he reflected in his diary: “I remembered Jesus’ warning: ‘Learn of me for I am meek and humble of heart’. Dazzled by the television lights, I could see nothing but an amorphous swaying mass. I blessed Rome and the world as though I were a blind man. As I came away I thought of all the cameras and lights that from now on, at every moment, would be directed on me. And I said to myself: if you don’t remain a disciple of the gentle and humble Master, you’ll understand nothing even of temporal realities. Then you will be really blind” (Cited in Peter Hebblethwaite, John XXIII – Pope of the Council, London: HarperCollins, 1984/1994, 287-288).
 
Mercy Begins with Me - Part 4 Ray Chapman sm
21 October 2021
On 28th November, Marist Laity Australia held its November Reflection day, leading us into the season of Advent. Fr Ray Chapman, a Marist priest who has given MLA such wonderful support over many years, was asked to facilitate this day. Fr Ray will be finishing his time as Parish Priest of St Patrick’s Church Hill at the end of this year. Our hopes were answered when he graciously agreed to give us this parting gift.

Ray chose as the theme, Mercy begins with ME, in step with the Jubilee Year of Mercy beginning on 8th December, the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Some 50 people turned up, many of whom were wanting to tap into Ray’s wisdom before he leaves for France.
 
What is a servant? Michael Whelan sm
16 October 2021
Service is a constant theme in the Bible. It takes on a particular significance in the Christian Scriptures. Sometimes the theme is explicit, mostly it is implicit. Thus, Matthew tells us: “The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (20:28). Life in the kingdom is characterized by service: “You also ought to wash one another’s feet” (John 13:14) and “just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me” (Matthew 25:40).
 
Mercy Begins with Me - Part 3 Ray Chapman sm
13 October 2021
On 28th November, Marist Laity Australia held its November Reflection day, leading us into the season of Advent. Fr Ray Chapman, a Marist priest who has given MLA such wonderful support over many years, was asked to facilitate this day. Fr Ray will be finishing his time as Parish Priest of St Patrick’s Church Hill at the end of this year. Our hopes were answered when he graciously agreed to give us this parting gift.

Ray chose as the theme, Mercy begins with ME, in step with the Jubilee Year of Mercy beginning on 8th December, the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Some 50 people turned up, many of whom were wanting to tap into Ray’s wisdom before he leaves for France.
 
Mercy Begins with Me - Part 2 Ray Chapman sm
12 October 2021
On 28th November, Marist Laity Australia held its November Reflection day, leading us into the season of Advent. Fr Ray Chapman, a Marist priest who has given MLA such wonderful support over many years, was asked to facilitate this day. Fr Ray will be finishing his time as Parish Priest of St Patrick’s Church Hill at the end of this year. Our hopes were answered when he graciously agreed to give us this parting gift.

Ray chose as the theme, Mercy begins with ME, in step with the Jubilee Year of Mercy beginning on 8th December, the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Some 50 people turned up, many of whom were wanting to tap into Ray’s wisdom before he leaves for France.
 
Questing allows us to live life Michael Whelan sm
10 October 2021
We easily forget that, at the heart of the word “question” is the word “quest”. This forgetfulness gives rise to a certain way of questioning that is merely functional. For example, I might ask one of the attendants in the supermarket, “Where is the washing powder?” or I might ask my doctor, “What is the best diet for me?”. It is probably fair to say that, for many, this merely functional questioning is the only kind of questioning.
 
Marriage is fragile Michael Whelan sm
03 October 2021
They are both on a journey. That over time, the two will become one flesh. But seldom, do we live out that image. Marriage is fragile and vulnerable journey.The laying downof one’s life.In sacrifice.It is the union with Jesus, that the couple findthe epitome,of their union.
 
What is missing? Michael Whelan sm
26 September 2021
What is missing? What is it that gets in the way of the good news? Of being transformed by the good news? The paradox is that we gain control by letting go. Blessed are those who can let go.
 
Falling in Love Michael Whelan sm
19 September 2021
Falling in love is a metaphor for being a disciple .
 
Wake up Michael Whelan sm
12 September 2021
Waking up is the work of a lifetime. Most of us will have particular moments of insight and new awareness from time to time. These are a normal part of an inner journey by which we become who and what we are – God’s creation. Today’s Gospel – Mark 8:25-37 – describes a moment of awakening for the disciples. It comes after many missed opportunities, it must be said. It is rare for human beings to grasp the first opportunity that life offers to wake up.
 
Reflection on Solitude - Mark 7:31 Michael Whelan sm
05 September 2021
We can recognize here the place of solitude in Jesus’ life. The English word “solitude” has its roots in the Latin word, solus, meaning “alone”. It is, however, quite different from simply “being alone”. Solitude is about being present to yourself – really present. That can indeed be aided by being alone. However, we can also experience solitude in a crowd. And we can resist solitude when we are alone. Solitude is a choice. It is facing the truth within. Solitude is an essential part of becoming
 
Bringing healing to a broken world- Fr John Larsen sm Father John Larsen sm
05 September 2021
So much around us can look as if it is broken. We see fractured countries and societies from Afghanistan to Myanmar, from Ethiopia to Venezuela. A huge earthquake tears Haiti apart while the rest of the world, ravaged with Covid and with fears about potential ecological disaster, hardly notices. Sometimes these factures seem to cut right through our own hearts and our own communities.
 
What does it mean to be church? Michael Whelan sm
29 August 2021
The kingdom – the Person – slowly emerges as a reality for us individually and communally in the context of human society. We must have rules and rituals for society to function. But those rules and rituals are not to be regarded as the instruments of our moral triumphs, but enablers of grace – the graced emergence of the kingdom.
 
Inspirational insights from Dr Jessy Rogers at the Convocation of the Plenary Dr Jessy Rogers
27 August 2021
Dr Jessy Rogers from Ireland, provided what the Plenary meant as an international church. Pope Francis has called the church to become a synodal church. Synodality needs mechanisms and processes to enable it to happen. This is what plenary councils and plenary councils do. Those are what enable it. Synodality itself is actually a way of being church.
 
A Hard Teaching - John 6 Michael Whelan sm
22 August 2021
If we have grown up within a Eucharistic faith, we may glide over “this teaching” that so affronted the disciples. Here is a little exercise. Imagine you are there with the disciples. Take a little time to construct the scene in your imagination. Catch Jesus’ eye. He holds your gaze and tells you: “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood you will not have life in you”. Hold his gaze. After a moment he says to you: “Do you also wish to go away?”
 
Everything is more than it seems Michael Whelan sm
15 August 2021
What we generally refer to as the “real world”, is largely constructed by human beings. It is a necessary fiction. Imagine trying to live without (at least some) shared meaning and values, agreed rules, regulations, and so on. Chaos and anarchy would ensue – at least until someone or some group takes charge and constructs an alternative “real world”. Dystopian movies such as the Mad Max series make much of this horrible possibility. 
 
Can prayer be a satisfying experience? John Thornhill SM
13 August 2021
Can prayer be a satisfying experience for all of us. Not only the professionals, the religious, the sisters, brothers and clergy? Can we all have a satisfying experience? Wanting to open the door to you towards what should be a satisfying experience.
 
Who can not worry? Michael Whelan sm
08 August 2021
Today’s Gospel – Matthew 6:25-34 – seems like a call to mobilize our willpower and strive not to worry. That would be a formula for worry! Add Jesus’ authority and the worry will be intensified by false guilt. This text needs careful interpretation.
 
Jesus model of poverty Classic Catholic Books
03 August 2021
By Peter Julian Eymard. Jesus is a model of poverty. “Blessed are the poor in spirit” (Matthew 5:3). The spirit and this virtue are a life of Jesus. Virtue and a perpetual poverty. The eternal word adopted it in his becoming man. He took what was most humiliating about poverty. The bode of beasts and what was most difficult about it. The stable. The major. The straw. The cold. The night. He was born far from the homes of men who offered him no assistance in his need. To be poorer still, the word made flesh will be born during a journey and refused hospitality on account of the poverty of his parents.
 
Our hearts are wrestless Michael Whelan sm
31 July 2021
In today’s Gospel – John 6:24-35 – we are told that the people are “looking for Jesus”. What do they want? What do they expect? Jesus says to them: “You are looking for me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves”. Still, they do not understand what he is pointing out to them. So they ask for a program, a sort of moral schedule that will ensure that they will be able to please God: “What must we do to perform the works of God?”
 
At the heart of it is how we deal with Vulnerability Michael Whelan sm
24 July 2021
In today’s Gospel – John 6:1-15 – we see Jesus with his disciples in an awkward situation. A large crowd had followed Jesus in the wilderness. Why? Because they believed in him as the Son of God? No! It was “because they saw the signs that he was doing for the sick”. They were not reading the miracles as “signs” but as power. Vulnerable people seeking invulnerability? They wanted some of that power channeled in their direction! This led to a potentially embarrassing outcome: “Jesus said to Philip: ‘Where are we to buy bread for these people to eat?’ He said this to test him, for he himself knew what he was going to do. Philip answered him, ‘Six months’ wages would not buy enough bread for each of them to get a little’.”
 
Being sent out Michael Whelan sm
11 July 2021
In today’s Gospel – Mark 6:7-13 – the fishermen are introduced to the mission: “Jesus called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits”. We are told little more than that “they cast out many demons, and anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them”. Notice, Jesus has not yet entrusted them with the ultimate task of proclaiming the reign of God, the Kingdom.
 
What is Marist Spirituality? Australian Marist Brothers
09 July 2021
I think of Marist spirituality as kitchen table spirituality. That way of being and talking about life to me is Marist Spirituality. It is not that it rejects the theoretical. It is just that it assumes that living it practically and making it real is the real essence of the spirit.
 
Pope Francis - The Mission of Lay people Pope Francis
08 July 2021
Lay people are on the front line of the life of the church. We need their testimony regarding the truth of the Gospel and their example of expressing their faith by practising solidarity. Let us give thanks for the lay people who take risks, who are not afraid and who offer reasons for hope to the poorest, to the excluded, to the marginalised.
 
We are but travellers here Michael Whelan sm
04 July 2021
A reflection on the Gospel Mark 6:1-6. A very wise old psychotherapist once told me that the work of the psychotherapist is to help people feel at home in the world, while the work of the spiritual director is to help people not feel at home in the world. If you are in anyway reflective, you will be aware of the “more than”. The presence of the “more than” can have varying and sometimes quite challenging effects on us.
 
The Eucharist is bread of sinners, not reward of saints John Larsen sm
04 July 2021
It’s a good time to reflect, each of us, on the role of the Eucharist in our personal, community and missionary lives. As Marists, how is the Eucharist “the source and summit of our whole Christian lives”? (Lumen Gentium, 11)
 
Blog - 5 minute Reflection on Simplicity Marist Laity Australia
29 June 2021
Simplicity is a very important for both Christians and Marists. It asks the question - 'What is the most important thing in our lives'? We are called to let go of what is not as important. Yet, this is very hard. Especially in our culture and society that encourages the opposite.
 
Jairus and the lady - Gospel Reflection Michael Whelan sm
27 June 2021
Unlike the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, Mark’s Gospel has no account of Jesus’ birth or early life. Mark plunges straight into the story of John the Baptist and the baptism of Jesus. A brief reference is made to the temptations in the desert then Jesus begins his public ministry. There is a sense of urgency. The first disciples are called, the sick are healed, demons are cast out, parables are told, Jesus sails back and forth across the Sea of Galilee, from the Jewish side to the Gentile side . . . he is on a mission!
 
CS Lewis - What are we to make of Jesus Christ? CS Lewis
24 June 2021
This is a question which has in a sense a frantically common sign. For the real question is not are we to make of Christ, but what is he to make of us. The picture of a fly sitting deciding what it is going to make of an elephant has common elements about it.
 
Lost in the Storm Michael Whelan sm
20 June 2021
All three synoptic Gospels give accounts of the calming of the storm – see Matthew 8:23–27; Luke 8:22–25 and Mark 4:35-41 which is today’s Gospel. Each of the accounts is remarkably similar. There is one extraordinary detail, however, that sets Mark’s account apart. At the height of their fear, Mark tells us that “they” – the disciples – said to Jesus, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” Don’t you care! What a thing to say to Jesus!
 
Planting Seed Michael Whelan sm
12 June 2021
“The kingdom of God is as if someone would scatter seed on the ground, and would sleep and rise night and day, and the seed would sprout and grow, he does not know how.” So begins today’s Gospel – see Mark 4:26-34. What a peculiar way to speak of “the Kingdom of God”! But parables are like that. They present the imagination with a series of triggers that can awaken us to new and deeper truths. Consider the last phrase as such a trigger – “he does not know how”. It challenges our taken for granted understanding of what it means to know. It invites us to open ourselves to a much deeper knowing – one that might, in fact, look more like “unknowing”.
 
Source and Summit of the Christian Life Michael Whelan sm
06 June 2021
Today we celebrate the Feast of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. Our Gospel – Mark 14:12-16 & 22-26 – gives us an intriguing description of the final meal Jesus has with his disciples. Is this a formal, Passover ritual or a more informal meal?
 
Living Life to the Full-Draft Three Religious Curriculum released Bishop Vincent Long
06 June 2021
At the same time, Bishop Vincent Long announced that this approach will be known as Living Life to the Full, drawing on Jesus’ words in John 10:10: “I have come so that they may have life and have it to the full.” Reflecting the richness of our Catholic Tradition that enables fullness of life through the Gospel, Living Life to the Full is an invitation for everyone to experience human flourishing.
 
Champagnat Week Resources Marist Formation Team (MLF) - Marist Association of Marcellin Champagnat
05 June 2021
The amazing Champagnat Week 2021 resources provided to Marist Schools and Ministries by the Marist Association of Saint Marcellin Champagnat. A gift that keeps giving. We hope all 56 schools and ministries in Australia are enjoying them.
 
Transformational Leadershipship for Marist Schools John McMahon fms
04 June 2021
Transformational leaders are future oriented people who are able to see fundamental discrepancies between the way things are and the way they should be, They recognise the shortcomings of a present order and offer an imaginative vision to overcome them.
 
Feast of the Holy Trinity - Matthew 28:16-20 Michael Whelan sm
29 May 2021
Today is the Feast of the Most Holy Trinity. It is a celebration of the Loving Community that we call God. Our Gospel text is a brief and simple one – Matthew 28:16-20: “make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”
 
Explore Pentecost in the Gospels - John 15:26 Michael Whelan sm
23 May 2021
Today’s Gospel – John 15:26-27 & 16:12-15 – reminds us of another Johannine theme: “Truth” – “when the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth”. “Truth”, as used by John, can only be understood in the context of the other themes, especially, menō.
 
Just Mass and Liturgy are not working Marist Laity Australia
16 May 2021
Recently I was having a conversation with another parent whose daughter finished school 3 years prior. She commented that during her daughters schooling religion and spirituality focused on academic and priority on thinking. Sadly, since leaving school, her daughter has completely abandoned religion. I thought to myself, this is typical for most young people in Australia. Someone in the teenage years, faith, religion and spirituality do not grow up.
 
Mark 16:15-20 Michael Whelan sm
16 May 2021
Endings are part and parcel of everyday life. Endings change things. Endings may be predictable or unpredictable, remarkable or unremarkable. The day ends, a night’s sleep ends, a meal ends, a conversation ends, a journey ends, a relationship ends, a career ends, a life ends. Day to day living simply would not go on without endings.
 
John 15:9-17 Michael Whelan sm
09 May 2021
Our Gospel today – John 15:9-17 – contains nine explicit references to love. Together they emphasize a profound and practical truth: Being a disciple of Jesus is being in love. The first of these references sets the context for the others: The Father’s love for Jesus. In his First Letter John spells this out: “God is love . . . all love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God . . . God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us” – see 1 John 4:8-10.
 
Luke 24:35-48 Michael Whelan sm
18 April 2021
One of the truly striking features of the Gospels is that they are focused on Jesus himself. Jesus is the Good News! That is nowhere more so than in today’s Gospel – Luke 24:35-48. When describing the reactions of the disciples, Luke uses words like, “startled” and “terrified” and “frightened”. However, perhaps the most interesting of his descriptions is, “in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering”.
 
John 20:19-31 Michael Whelan sm
10 April 2021
In John’s Gospel, Thomas seems to be a man of drive and energy, ready to take on a challenge, a man of high ideals. But he also likes to be convinced that what he is doing is worth it. We meet him in John 11:16, when Jesus announces his intention of returning to Judea to visit Lazarus: “Thomas, who was called the Twin, said to his fellow disciples, ‘Let us also go, that we may die with him’”. Thomas does not really know what he is saying!
 
Bishop Vincent Longs Easter Message 2021 Bishop Vincent Long
05 April 2021
At the heart of the Easter message is the summons to a new future, framed with hope and possibility, in the midst of entrenched hopelessness. As with Mary and the disciples, who were emboldened to move from the shadows of crucifixion into the light and life of the Risen Christ, the Church must live this message.
 
Mark 16:1-9 Michael Whelan sm
04 April 2021
Listen to the hopelessness in those opening lines of today’s Gospel – Mark 16:1-8: “When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. They had been saying to one another, ‘Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?’” It is not difficult to imagine the women walking with their heads down. The harsh truth of what they had personally witnessed was weighing heavily on them. From the arrest of Jesus, through his “trial”, torture and eventual brutal crucifixion, they had every last ounce of hope wrung out of them. That Friday was not a beginning but an unimaginably horrid ending.
 
Easter Reflection from the Superior General Marist Father John Larsen
04 April 2021
For many people Easter weekend is celebrated with friends and family, with sports events and taking “a bit of a break”. This year the Covid virus puts a dark cloud over some of these celebrations, but people do the best they can. There may be the hope that in the midst of all these celebrations people remember the joy of the Resurrection. Well, perhaps!
 
Mark 14:1-15:47 Michael Whelan sm
28 March 2021
Madeleine Albright, US Secretary of State from 1997 to 2001, published a book entitled, Fascism: A Warning (London: William Collins, 2018). She was eleven when she escaped from Czechoslovakia with her parents and two siblings. She lost “three grandparents, and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins … among the millions of Jews who had died in the ultimate act of Fascism – the Holocaust”
 
Marian Lecture - Underground Cathedrals Marist Association of Marcellin Champagnat
23 March 2021
Is it possible that the Holy Spirit is working underground in places today where we may not have even considered? Come and listen to renowned spiritual guide and former Abbot of the famous Glentsal Abbey in Ireland, Mark Patrick Hederman OSB, as he unearths underground cathedrals and explores where the Holy Spirit is at work in the world and lives of ordinary people today.
 
John 12:20-33 Michael Whelan sm
21 March 2021
It is easy to forget – and we must not forget! – the huge transformation that the disciples have to go through in their thinking of the Christ. The standard assumptions would have been strongly influenced by the legends of David passed down through the ages. At the very least, the Christ would meet some acceptable criteria of human success. Little if anything in current thinking prepared them for a Christ who would be vulnerable, apparently defeated by the powers that be, left to die an ignominious death like a criminal on a Roman cross for the passing world to mock.
 
Why St. Joseph is the saint we need in 2021 Father James Martin
19 March 2021
The hiddenness of St. Josephs life can speak to those overwhelmed by the pandemic. Fr. James Martin, SJ, reflects on why St. Joseph is the saint we need as enter into a new year.
 
John 3:14-21 Michael Whelan sm
14 March 2021
In today’s brief Gospel text – John 3:14-21 – John has Jesus make a summary statement of human moral possibilities: “The light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed. But those who do what is true come to the light”.
 
The Eucharist is Gods embrace Father Ron Rolheiser
05 March 2021
By Father Ron Rolheiser. I went through the seminary and I went through many courses on the Eucharist. After 3 major courses on the Eucharist, I have decided that I do not understand the Eucharist. But, that is okay, the Eucharist is not meant to be understood. Why not? Well this is the story.
 
The Three Violets Marist Laity Australia
03 March 2021
To simplicity we link humility and modesty, making the “three violets” of our Marist tradition. In our teaching and organisational structures, we show a preference for simplicity of method. Our way of educating, like Marcellin’s, is personal, rooted in real life, and practical. Likewise simplicity of expression, avoiding any ostentation, guides our way of responding to the possibilities and the demands of our contemporary educational settings.
 
Mark 9:2-10 Michael Whelan sm
28 February 2021
The second affirmation occurs at the transfiguration of Jesus. The transfiguration begins the testing period leading to Jerusalem and the Cross – the second half of Mark’s Gospel.
 
Mark 1:12-15 Father Michael Whelan SM
21 February 2021
We are in the presence of someone who has experienced an event that has turned his world on its head – he has been driven into the wilderness by the Spirit of God! By any measure – if it is true what we say about the Incarnation – it should also turn my world on its head.
 
Pope Francis Lenten Message 2021 Pope Francis
16 February 2021
Listen to the audio of Pope Francis Lenten Message for 2021.
 
Eucharist is boring Marist Laity Australia
14 February 2021
Explore the meaning of the eucharist through a series of interactive activities. Is the Eucharist boring or is there something we are missing? Ponder the meaning.....both personally, at home, in youth group or at school.
 
Mark 1:29 Father Michael Whelan SM
07 February 2021
A short reflection on Jesus calling of his disciples and mission of Jesus Christ.
 
The Magnificat John Thornhill sm
04 February 2021
By John Thornhill sm The Magnificat is probably the most revealing text about Mary. It comes from Saint Luke. Saint Luke really loved Mary and was very interested in Mary. There is a rich number of text in Luke’s infancy Gospel and the other parts of the Gospel.
 
Mark 1:21 Father Michael Whelan SM
31 January 2021
A short reflection on authority both in Jesus in his day, but also today.
 
The Marist Spirit Antoine Forissier
31 January 2021
This is a summary from one of the books in the Marist Laity Australia library in the Colin Library. It's about the Marist Spirit.
 
Reflective Listening Therapy in a nutshell
30 January 2021
Reflective listening is the ability to bounce back at them what they are saying. This is a skill that does not come naturally to us. When involved in a conversation we tend to talk about ourselves, or give advice, we try to make them feel better or agree or disagree or tell stories.
 
An uncommon courage Jamia Wilson and Joan Chistter
28 January 2021
We do not break generations apart. That is what we learn in scripture. We carry the best of every generation with us. That is the difference between tradition and traditionalism. There was a liturgist at St John’s in Minnesota, Godfrey Dateman said one day “I don’t have a lot to teach you. But I will teach you the difference between tradition and traditionalism. Traditionalism is the stuff we pass on. Tradition is the passing on of the stuff”.
 
Prayer for Teachers Unknown
27 January 2021
A prayer and reflection for teachers
 
Mark 1:14 Michael Whelan sm
24 January 2021
A short reflection on the calling of Peter in the Gospels.
 
Word Made Flesh M.C Larkin SM
21 January 2021
The Vocation of a Marist involves a response to four calls The Call of Christ, The Call of the Church, The Call of the Founder and The Call of modern humanity.
 
A Culture of Care for the Path of Peace Pope Francis
11 January 2021
Listen to the audio of Pope Francis' message of Peace for January 2021 entitled 'A Culture of Care for the Path of Peace'.
 
Bearers of Hope Marist Sister Marie Berise Nash SM
10 January 2021
By Marist Sister Marie Berise Nash sm on how we become 'Bearers of Hope'. In this present period of the beginning of the Third Millennium we wish to turn in a special way to her (Mary) the one who in the night of the Advent expectation began to shine like a true Morning Star, for just as this star, together with the dawn precedes the rising of the sun, so Mary from the time of her Immaculate Conception preceded the coming of the Saviour Her presence in the midst of Israel a presence so discreet as to pass almost unnoticed by the eyes of her contemporaries shone very clearly before the Eternal One who had associated the hidden daughter of Zion with the plan of salvation embracing the whole history of humanity.
 
Dreams and Visions Craig Larkin sm
07 January 2021
Marists are people who claim to have such a vision, and who believe that what they do is supremely worthwhile. In fact, it's very important that we define ourselves as Marists, not by what we do but by our special vision of life.
 
The enemy this Christmas Father Michael Whelan SM
22 December 2020
In our search for possible factors within the Catholic system that might have had some bearing on the incidence of sexual abuse and the poor way it was handling, we turn now to the question of belief and, more specifically, how we think of Jesus Christ.
 
Wonder Stephen Chbosky
17 December 2020
Wonder is a powerful film about a 10 year old boy (Augie Pullman) who is born with a significant facial disfigurement. The film journeys with Augie’s transition between being home schooled and returning to regular day school. Wonder deals with several major issues such as bullying, poor self-esteem, peer pressure and family break down. Through these difficulties Augie is able to discover the goodness of who is through the relationships and friendships that form around him.
 





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