Lay Marists Aotearoa-New Zealand
How it Works: Many Ways, One Spirit.
There are two main ways men, women and families associate with Marist Laity NZ; the Association of Mary and Marian Mothers. The information about Marian Mothers is HERE. We are also open to new initiatives for individuals, groups and families so contact us if you have an idea.
Diversity is one of the hallmarks of the Marist Charism and Fr Colin, the founder of the Society of Mary had a sense that the spirit of Mary was to flow into the whole world. If you have an idea for growing a sense of being a disciple like Mary in your area; connect with us and we are happy to help discern it with you.
To intentionally bear Mary’s name as a Lay person is to live daily life aware of being called to live the gospel of love and mercy following Mary’s way in simplicity and ordinariness appropriate to our life circumstances.
It is possible to move through stages of belonging and and formation to make a simple commitment entrusting our lives to the Trinity through Mary. This is initially for a twelve month period after reflection and discernment. It is a Lay way of saying ‘Yes’ to Jesus like Mary. We ask her help and support in following Jesus, placing ourselves ‘under her name’ and care and commit to her work and way of living as disciples. Mary always leads to Jesus and helps us be open to the Holy Spirit for the glory of God.
Mary was a lay woman and Marist discipleship is ideally suited to the 21st century where Laity are called to accept their full dignity and co-responsibility within the church for the world. “The Virgin Mary teaches us what it means to live in the Holy Spirit and what it means to accept the news of God in our life.” (Pope Francis, 28 April 2013)
To be Marist is one way to respond generously to the call to new evangelization and is open to all age groups.
What support is Available? We offer discussion reflection material each month from February to December and you can sign up below to receive these by email. You will receive a link to the reflections by podcast and printable resource or you can request a posted CD with newsletter and a meeting guide. Interested individuals anywhere can sign up for the email notification. Overseas groups can also receive material by post if needed but donations are requested for this option. Marist formation and renewal material is available for those who are interested in Lay Marist commitment. Please contact us.
There are opportunities for retreats. The Coordinator visits groups when possible for prayer, formation and encouragement.
Doing Mary’s work
Today is a time of great change, a new world is being born. These times are made for Marist mission; the work of Mary. The conditions that apply to doing Mary’s work are not conditions set by Marists but by Mary herself. It is work done on her terms.
The type of work that Marists do is not what seems easiest or most attractive. Sometimes, it seems that it is suggested to us, as work that Mary might have done were she about, or what she might have seen needed doing. Marists try to do it simply – the way she would of herself. The way Mary lived and went about her work inspires Marists. At the heart of Mary’s work is an openness to all people, it excludes no one and is enables men and women to grow and develop according to their truest call.
People can be weak, we sometimes slip up. The work of Mary is in evidence when mercy and compassion are present and the doorway to Jesus Christ is open without an entrance fee and without demands that strict requirements for belonging be followed.