THE MARIST FAMILY INSTITUTE OF SPIRITUALITY
From Vincent Poisella ('58)
The planning committee for the Marist Family Institute of Spirituality
enthusiastically invites canonical Marists, ex-Marists and their wives,
and all who wish to share in an expression of Marist Spirituality, to
Marist College on July 9, 10, 11, and 12, 1998.
Theme: "There is a variety of gifts, but always the same Spirit;
there are all sorts of services to be done, but always to the same lord
..." (1 Cor. 12: 4-7, 11) Invited presenters include Paul Ambrose,
Luke Driscoll, Leonard Voegtle, David Kammer, Larry Keogh, Gene Zirkel,
Barney Sheridan, Bob Grady, Owen Lafferty. The program extends from
Thursday, July 9 at 5 pm to Sunday, July 12 at 1 pm. Participants may
join in throughout the weekend.
The cost of full participation, including meals and lodging, is $200
a person. Partial participation costs will be prorated on an individual
basis.This cost barely covers expenses.
Anyone interested in joining us in July should send a $25 deposit to
Vincent Poisella, 24 Brooklyn Mountain Road, Hopatcong, New Jersey,
07843, by May 1st. Those interested, but feel they cannot make commitment
at this time but would like a schedule and particulars to be mailed
to them, should call Vince at 973-398-5477. All previous participants
of the last three years will receive a mailing by the end of March.
LET US COME TOGETHER, PRAY TOGETHER,BE TOGETHER!
FROM PETE SEDLEMEIR ('61): After the last Marists All arrived, I told
my wife Margaret that it's about time I write again, but what to write
about? In an earlier issue I wrote that I work with "at risk"
public middle/high school youngsters. A student who had been fighting
battles on many fronts spoke to me recently about wanting to drop out
of school because "school doesn't teach you anything." I started
talking about what's behind the Molloy motto "Non scholae sod vitae."
We explored life lessons that his school was attempting to teach. I
don't know if anyone ever spoke to him like that before, but apparently
this was the first time he was ready to hear and act on it.
I tell this story because it underscores the message that is frequently
brought up in these pages, namely, that the spirit of Champagnat lives
on, not only in the lives of those who remain with the congregation
but also in the lives of those who found God calling them to different
ways of service.
Working to make God's love known to those who are the least favored
by society is being rediscovered by the Church. To Champagnat, social
justice was not just a term but a natural extension of love of God.
In their involvements all Marists have God, the presence of God. And
Marists have a "can do" attitude and competency resulting
from the various tasks assigned and completed during training, tasks
that ranged through physical, intellectual, and spiritual endeavors.
Even weeding with Brother Felician taught me something. In Marists,
others see something "unique." The testimony of those who
contribute to Marists All confirms this. (2 Pearson Road, Preston Hollow,
New York, 12469; 518-239-6282)
FROM BR. LEONARD VOEGTLE ('50): As some of you already know, I lead
a "double life," spending three weeks living at Marist in
Bayonne while working in the tribunal of the archdiocese of Newark and
then spending three following weeks "archiving" in Esopus.
The location of the archives for the two United States provinces is
the former sacristy area next to the main chapel in Esopus.
With the guidance of Br. Dennis Sennett, an Atonement friar from Graymoor
and a master archivist who has helped some 200 religious institutes
around the world. I've created a filing system specifically geared to
our Marist archival needs and compatible with a standard archival computer
program which we already have.
I've gone through the hundred or so boxes sent from the provincial
offices in Pelham and Bayonne, and I've separated the books from the
documents. The books are in newly-created bookcases, sorted according
to general category: official institute publications (Bulletin de l'Institut,
Circulars, FMS Message), official province publications (Bulletin of
Studies mainly), Marist books (Constitutions, Common Rules, office books,
music books: Liber, American Catholic Hymnal), books relating to the
Founder and to individual Brothers, books by Marist Brothers, school
Documents, I've roughly sorted into categories of province administration
and of schools/communities. We also have all the records from the formation
centers, beginning with the entering juniors in 1906 ... Brother Henry
Charles and his gang!
I've begun a sorting of literally thousands of photographs, some of
them from the early years of the United States province. There are also
thousands of slides I've not even touched yet, plus a number of audio
cassettes and video tapes of interviews with our "elder statesmen."
I've begun establishing the personnel file, with a folder for every
brother who has been a member of the U.S. provinces since 1911. There
are three sections: the living, the deceased, and those who have withdrawn.
These folders are locked in file cabinets upstairs with the stacks.
This reminds me: contrary to long-standing rumor, there is no "black
book" containing all the negative things superiors supposedly wrote
about us through the years. For that matter, there's none in Rome either,
What remains to be done? Number each document, photo, book according
to our filing system. Each document is placed in a numbered folder and
the folders are placed in numbered boxes on the shelves in the stacks.
Once enough material has been catalogued and stored, I must begin to
enter everything into the computer program.
While doing all of that, I answer occasional requests for information:
the Philippine province getting ready to celebrate their golden jubilee
next year ... children of former brothers wanting to learn more about
their fathers' life as a Marist ... people doing their family tree and
discover a Marist Brother on one of the branches, etc.
I can't finish this without thanking the brothers and former brothers
who have already given me documents, letters, photos, and artifacts.
Sometimes people ask whether this or that is archival material. I would
much rather sort through it all myself than to hear those very dreaded
words, "Oh, I came across some old stuff, but I figured it wasn't
worth much, so I threw it out." Agghhh! as Charlie Brown would
say! (1241 Kennedy Boulevard, Bayonne, New Jersey, 07002; 201-437-4115)
(P.O. Box 197, Esopus, New York, 12429; 914-384-6625)
FROM RICHARD JAMBOR: ('50): Gus, your beautiful and most sensible note
in the latest Marists All deserves a prize. For what it's worth, when
I left the congregation over here in Japan, I was treated so kindly,
in true Marist spirit.
Ed Lyons used to say that one should not name people when thanking,
lest you leave someone out. Well, let me try anyway! First, there was
John LaRoche who listened to me so patiently and without judgment. Then
there was Ramon, the director at the time; he was and still is a REAL
friend. In fact, the whole community in Kumamoto helped me. Pat Tyrell
was in the second novitiate at the time, but afterwards he never referred
to my leaving in the many occasions when we met.
Up to Kobe I went, where Gus Landry went with me on long walks, dispelling
my anxiety. Walter kept me laughing. Matty Callahan hired me and put
up with me. I often wonder where I would have been except for the Brothers.
Would I have even gone to college? Would I have ended up as cannon fodder
in Korea? Can I ever forget the forebearance of Kieran Brennan and Pat
Magee who gambled and let me have a year off to study?
One more thing: I have had opportunities to visit the monks, especially
Molloy when my old friend Danny Sullivan was still alive. I stopped
over in New York and Hugh Andrew and Bill Lavigne, two classmates, were
so kind in meeting me at JFK and putting me up for the night. The next
day they took me to Molloy where the Brothers went out of their way
to make me feel at home ... just as Vinnie Doughty always did while
he was here in Japan and as the other monks still do at Sunday Mass
in their chapel in Kobe. Yes, I have been truly blessed by having been
permitted to spend some part of my life with men whose example still
challenges me every day.
And Gus, you and Dave deserve so much credit for the work you are doing
in bringing all the Marist family together. Yes, Michael O'Shea is right,
"There really are no ex-monks" (14-2, 4-chome, Utakikiyan,
Tarumi-ku, KOBE, JAPAN 655; firstname.lastname@example.org)
FROM JACK RYAN ('60): Not even a gathering of the John Berchmans Memorial
Notre Dame Fan Club was enough to help the Irish in their 20-17 loss
to USC on October 18th. Nevertheless, a little planning resulted in
a great weekend. George Howard, our Notre Dame psychology professor,
provided the hospitality. Joe Maura got the award for coming the longest
distance. Jack Meehan was in from Long Island, and Jack Ryan from Grosse
Point, Michigan. John Reynolds drove down from Flint, where he has been
on the Powers Catholic faculty since '70. John's son Johnny, a Michigan
State junior, accompanied his dad.
John said it has been a tough year for him football-wise. He starts
his weekend Friday night rooting for Powers, a perennial powerhouse,
off to a 1-6 start this season. John says that between the troubles
of Powers on Friday and Notre Dame on Saturday, he is starting to feel
like Job on his heap of troubles.
Joe Maura took a brief respite from his work with the homeless in Miami
to scout the New York city area for a field goal kicker in hopes of
getting the Irish some help in their kicking game. Joe said Declan had
good length but was consistently wide left, while Kevin O'Neill was
invariably off to the right!
Jack Meehan's son Sean and Jack Ryan's daughter Maureen, both in the
Notre Dame class of 1999, discovered the common Marist heritage that
their dads shared back in their freshman year at Notre Dame. On Friday
night George Howard invited Maureen and Jack Ryan Jr., Notre Dame class
of 2001, to bring their friends to his Granger, Indiana, home for dinner.
George whipped up a great spaghetti dinner for large numbers, and the
Ryan kids surprised their mom Elane with a birthday cake for her fiftieth
birthday. The spaghetti got Joe Maura reminiscing about his cooking
days in Esopus. It's worth a call to Joe in Miami to get him to tell
the story of cooking spaghetti for 180 at the Prep.
Sean Meehan entertained the Saturday tail gate group with his bagpipes
and his dad Jack related stories of how the Meehan family had at least
four family members in the first bagpipe band up Fifth Avenue in the
New York St. Patrick's Day parade. If we had known of Jack's talents,
we would have had some real, real pazzazzzz for the Army-Navy games
back in our Esopus days.
Jack Ryan offered the group a tour of any Michigan foundry and they
promised to buy their next vibratory conveyor or wire resin belt from
It was a great time under the sunny South Bend skies, lots of great
stories from the past, and we all agreed that none of us had aged at
all since our days on the Hudson. (P.S. You're doing a great job; we
all appreciate it! P.P.S. I am looking for a copy of Ed Cashin's book
The King's Ranger - to buy or even to borrow; it seems to have sold
out everywhere. 1238 Berkshire Road, Grosse Pointe, Michigan, 48230;
FROM BR. RENE ROY ('60): As I enter my Junior Year in Rwanda, it seems
more than ever that the sands of time are flowing more and more like
an avalanche. So were my eleven cyclonic weeks in the States, and thus
have passed the ensuing weeks since my return. The home visit made me
feel loved and welcomed and immensely aware of the coast to coast support
system that is behind us.
The image of a spider and its web comes to mind. The web was extended
to Seattle where five Rotary Clubs pledged to finance a new well and
water system for our school. In San Francisco individuals asked how
they could help. In the windy city of Chicago friends are working on
scholarships and host families for Rwandan students. In Marbelhead churches
of several denominations are raising money to help our poor or orphaned
pay their tuition. We have not turned away one student who gave proof
of inability to pay tuition; we will be able to help even more as the:orphan
fund expands. Near Charleston an extension of the kind people of Wheeling
has adopted us. Long time members of the web continue their support
through the Marist Development Office, through school mission funds,
and through direct personal donations. I feel like a good, non-poisonous,
spider who is an instrument unleashing enormous generosity and tying
it to the web whose center is Rwanda.
While at home I went on a mad, mad shopping spree; to my web I tied
sales personnel and check-out personnel. Dermot was involved in the
job of shopping from Day One, as were my own brothers. Contact members
were on hand to help pack some 50 boxes and a ton of goods. A trucking
company trans ported the whole kit and kaboodle to JFK for free. SwissAir/Sabena
offered a reduced cargo rate. Other contacts were made for free shipment
of medicine, books, and humanitarian aid. Here in Rwanda several new
friends greased us through the red tape and obtained a duty exemption
for us, saving hundreds, if not thousands of dollars,
We now have the necessary things to run a school. I am privileged to
be commissioned SPIDER WEB, bridge between the generosity of so many
at home and the needs of so many here in Rwanda. I feel humbled at the
ready response of this army of supporters. Knowing that the bridge will
continue long after I have left this area makes me the happiest. (Freres
Maristes, B.P. 80, Gitarama, Rwanda, Africa)
FROM GREGORY BALLERIINO ('57):Your persistance in locating my new address
merits the Sherlock Holmes Pipe Award. Thank you for the investigation.
The Marist experience is indelible, never to be forgotten; in the jargon
of yesterday, a peak experience. Congratulations for the inspiration,
the dedication, and the love given to nourish the "other"
I wish to respond to issues publicly expressed by LaPietra and Sheridan
in issue #40. Regarding financial predictability: Marists All is member
supported. I support what I value. I value Marists All. Here's my check.
It's so simple! I suggest sending the newsletter by e-mail. Those without
e-mail would continue to get the news letter by snail-mail. If we develop
a Marists All web site, those surfing could read the document on screen
or download it. What a wealth of talent and experience we have, careers
from a to z, Could those talented people not share some of their experience?
We could use the internet and the web site to establish a chat line
by which anyone could log on, ask questions, and invite responses. I
volunteer to help. Thank you, Richard.
In response to Barney Sheridan, I see two issues, one pertaining to
perceived values and the other to image. Almost all of those who write
seem to perceive value in their time with the Marist Brothers.
Over and over we read: "This is how much I value the Marist Brothers."
I don't recall, however, anyone saying how the Marists valued those
who were and are members. If my value was perceived but never acknowledged,
there may remain a sense of years lost, and with it a feeling of sadness
and in some cases hurt and pain.
There was an early vocation brochure (late 50's) entitled, "The
Image of a Brother." The image, indeed, is what we all attempted
to live. To become an "image" meant letting go of many personality
traits and conveniences. We gave up our birth name to become "Brother
ZYX" We gave up our street clothes to wear a black cassock. We
sublimated our personality development to take on the image. The collective
image indeed did have enormous presence and power, especially to the
outside world. The image was sacred and protected, no matter what kind
of a personality was under the cassock. For some, personality co-existed
very well with the image. For others, the struggle for emergence and
development of personality ignited the divorce from the image. Each
one of us played out this very scene. There is no judgment. No right.
You say: "Could we have lived so close and not known each other's
pain?" How could we possibly get close enough to reveal emotional
pain? Remember the novitiate saying: "Rarely one, never two, always
three," or something like that. At this time it is understandable
that we speak of a common hunger to stay in touch, We have a second
chance now to "be there for each other." Much love and respect
to my distant fellow travelers, And thank you, Barney.
An update of my career since my last contribution to this newsletter
nine years ago: VP Air Cleaning Systems, analyzing and solving indoor
air polution problems; project manager setting up laser cartridge manufacturing
plants (recently returned from nine months on-site in Prague, additional
months in Germany, Bulgaria, and Switzerland); M.A. in psychology: developed
twenty-four 10-week seminars using altered states group therapy; produced
and directed music section for international conference at the University
of California at Irvine. Daughter Celeste, now 24, has dynamic career
at Nike. (1058 Camden Dr., Placentia, Ca. 92870; 714-998--7473; gregu@pacbell,net)
FROM RICH STANULWICH ('66): Though I've never met Francis X. "Barney"
Sheridan, I feel deeply indebted to him for his letter in the August
issue of Marists All. It was late summer of 1965 when my parents took
me to Grand Central Station. My mother was crying so much that a gentleman
at the station's famous balcony thought she was going to jump to commit
suicide. She was just feeling it so difficult to say good-bye and let
her son go. For my part, I quickly felt part of the family atmosphere
after arriving at Tyngsboro with two new friends, Joe and Tony. I was
never much of a scholar, but our teachers were very kind and concerned
about us. There were Brothers David, John Malich, John Francis (a great
English teacher and fellow accordianist), Giles, and Leo Camille.
The older, retired Brothers were a joy. We had a pretty large class
and most of us enjoyed our lives together. We had opportunities for
privacy, prayer, and meditation. The chapel was a special place to be
with our God many times a day. (I do remember, however, upsetting Father
Leo Staves with some serious boo-boo's during high Mass.)
Our work on the farm was a blessing from God. Feeding, milking, and
cleaning up after the cows was some experience. One can't forget, too,
cleaning the chicken coop, picking potatoes, and gathering hay.
We had a small band, Ed, Joe, Vinny; at times Brother John Francis
joined us. We weren't good, but we were loud! And we played a lot of
football, basketball, and handball. One of the best athletes was Kenny
Davis. Kenny was a big guy physically, but he could play any sport with
the best of them. Recently Kenny died of cancer; I said a few prayers
at his casket for all of us, his Marist family. And I was able to share
some of the old stories with his wife and his son.
Though I was at Tyngsboro for only one year, I've always carried a
sadness for never having said thank-you to all the wonderful Brothers
who taught and helped me to grow as a person. Also I felt a little cheated
that I couldn't say good-bye to my many fine classmates. In those days
you weren't supposed to tell anyone you were leaving. You were up early
and then gone. When I got some of my clothes through the mail a week
or so later, there were notes among my clothing from some of the fellows.
My experience at the novitiate, I'm sure, helped me in more ways than
even I know. Thanks to Blessed Marcellin Champagnat. Thanks be to God!
(150 Wilson Street, Beacon, New York, 12508)
FROM RON PASQUARIELLO ('57): I have wanted to contribute to Marists
All for the past few years; the proposed new form prods me. I am enclosing
a chapter from my latest book, Jesus and the Message of Love.
I've published six others. The latest book presents the gospel message
in a fictional framework. The controlling ideas of the book: (1) When
God decides to become human, it is Jesus that he or she become. If we
want to find out what God is like, we have to look to the historical
Jesus, to what he did, how he lived, as well as what he said. (2) The
most important part of Jesus' message is not what we have to do to be
loving, but that God loves us. (3) To say God is love is to say that
God only exists in relationship, because love is relational. We have
to see this relationship, however, in terms of the universe(s), not
just in terms of human beings.
Meanwhile, I'm healthy, happy, living in the-San Francisco Bay area,
with f ond memories of my Marist days. The very best to all, (13849
Green Valley Road, Forestville, Ca. 95436-9708; email@example.com)
FROM BILL COWIE ('60): I just finished reading a couple of recent issues
of Marists All. I enjoy each issue thoroughly. Thank you for your reflections
on the Mass; it meant a lot to me. I promise to make a written contribution
in the not-too-distant future. In Christ. (27 Stinson Road, Andover,
FROM BR. JULIAN ROY ('48): This is the golden jubilee year of the
group of 1948. Fifty years, not a very big number by today's standards,
yet in 1948 it seemed like an astronomical number, 1,892,160,000 heartbeats
away! Gus Nolan was part of the group, as was Sean O'Shea who mentioned
Br. Henry Charles in the last issue of Marists All. All of this stirs
me to share a few memories of yesteryear.
My first experience of a golden jubilee celebration was on December
8, 1947, our postulant year. It was that of Br. Adolph Armand of the
novitiate faculty and of Br. Legontianus of the Esopus juniorate faculty.
The celebration was held in the new Marian College gym, Br. Francis
Xavier's first major building project. Late the night before the festivities
BFX had just completed the rough wooden flooring of the gym.
Earlier the groups of '47 and '48 had shoveled many truck loads of
gravel for the base of the cement floor. It had been a contest: could
we load more trucks than the previous day in our one hour "recreation"
period? Sweaty and tired the 70 novices and postulants would then gather
for rosary in the tiny chapel/oratory with the "odor of sanctity"
permeating the atmosphere.
It was an impressive jubilee ceremony. Liturgy, singing, and music
were provided by the Marian College choir and orchestra under the able
direction of Br. Adrian August. A scholastic narrated a short biography
of each of the jubilarians; their accomplishments were outstanding and
Our golden jubilee that had seemed eons away in 1948 has so quickly
arrived. We were 36 young men taking the habit on that hot, humid July
26th in 1948. There were 31 who made first vows the following year.
Five years later 21 professed final vows. Today we are eight living,
while four others have gained their eternal reward: Brothers Denis Damian,
Paul Jones, John Malachy, and Joe Marchesseault.
We were the largest and last group to complete the entire year of novitiate
in the old building at the southern end of the Poughkeepsie property.
That small structure housed the 70 of us in cramped quarters with limited
lavatory facilities. We have the distinct honor, also, of being Br.
Henry Charles' last group. He didn't make it through our novice year,
resigning in January because of health. He was replaced by Louis Omer
(founder of the Philippine mission) who had just completed his two terms
Personally, it has been a rewarding life. We experienced the great
changes brought about by Vatican II and the political socioeconomic
waves that swept the decades. My assignments included Wheeling, the
Mount, Lourdes, Pine Ridge Reservation, Brownsville, Fort Lauderdale,
Chicago, and two months in Katmandu, Nepal, working as a science education
consultant to the Nepali government under contract with USAID. I am
still an active amateur radio operator contacting other operators all
over the world. I've spent the last 17 years in Chicago, 15 as an administrative
assistant. I retired two years ago and find myself more busy than before.
God bless the editors, contributors, and the readers of Marists All.
(4300 West 115th St., Chicago,Il. 60655-4306; lroyc4kiwi.dep.anl.gov)
FROM BR. DENIS HEM ('64): One message in a recent Marists All suggested
that we speak not only of the "ole days" but also of the present.
So here is a word or two regarding three Brothers in Wheeling, John
McDonagh ('59), Dave Cooney ('62), and Denis Hever ('64). Two of us,
John and Denis, are working as chaplains in two different health care
facilities. Dave is working at Catholic Charities Neighborhood Center
in conjunction with Marist Sister Constance Dodd. This year we accepted
two young people from the Marist Volunteer Program, Melissa and Dan.
So now our community consists of lay and vowed members with co-ed living.
Life certainly has changed, hasn't it? This situation is not unique
to Wheeling; it is happening in other houses of the provinces.
In 1996 the three of us were asked to "refound" a Wheeling
Marist community. The Brothers had staffed Central Catholic High School
from 1933 to 1972, and they had continued in Wheeling until 1988. For
so many of the alumni and alumnae the Brothers will not really be here
until they are teaching as a group in some Catholic school, so deep
were the people's experiences with the Brothers, experiences they would
like to see resumed.
As I write this letter, I am struggling with the idea of inclusion
which was voiced in the latest copy of Marists All. How to have various
elements of the Marist family work together? Even as Priests, Sisters,
Brothers, and Volunteers are trying to create a better Marist presence
in Wheeling, I hear "how can the present members of the Marist
community and the past members be more "organic." (Thank you,
I don't fully know. My belief is that a question which is raised often,
if it reflects searching that is going on in others, will begin to take
shape through efforts made by each person and through efforts made working
together. We must continue to ask the questions and continue to respond.
Thank you so much. (Marist Community, 49 36th Street, Wheeling, Wv.
Bishop Francis Lambert, brother of Br. Chanel Lambert ('41) and an
uncle of Br. William Chanel ('57), died October 29th of a massive stroke
at the age of 76. After 49 years in the missions of Vanuatu (New Hebrides)
Bishop Lambert had returned to establish himself in retirement near
his family in Florida just a month earlier. The bishop was ordained
a Marist Father in 1946, went to the missions in 1948, and was made
bishop of a series of islands in the South Pacific in 1977.
We have word that Tim Murphy ('32) died in Milford, Pa., on October
4th at the age of 81. He is another person we did not have on our mailing
We have discovered that Conrad Piotrowski ('65) is deceased. The last
copy of our newsletter was returned with that statement.
EDITOR'S NOTE: The last issue of Marists All arrived in most
locations around November 6th. Since Thanksgiving correspondence to
us has almost dried up. We really need you to contribute to our pages.
Articles for the May issue must be in as soon as possible, May 1st at
the latest. We expect the present issue to cost us around $300. Since
November we have received $140. Of course, we are most grateful for
all your help, past and most recent.
GUS NOLAN and Liz are spending February and March in New Smyrna Beach,
Florida. You may write to them at P.O. Box 1558, New Smyrna Beach, Fl.
Write to DAVID KAMMER at 476 La Playa, Edgewater, Florida, 32141. Thanks
to Br. Richard Rancourt for dealing with the printing and mailing of
this issue from Marist College.