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Marianist Resources

The Society of Mary founded St. Mary's University in 1852. This guide will help you learn more about the Marianists.

Genres of Marianist Writing

The following was prepared by Bro. Lawrence Scrivani, San Antonio, Texas, November 2018.

1. Writings of the Founders and Close Associates of Father Chaminade

The foundational era is considered to be 1800-1850.  Most of the writings of this class are published as compendia of primary documentation.  They are intended for research by specialists and not for a general readership.  Among the many possible persons in this category, the most significant are considered to be:

Chaminade, Guillaume-Joseph, 1761-1850

Lamourous, Marie Thérèse Charlotte de, 1754-1836

Batz de Trenquelléon, Adele de, 1789-1828

See section entitled “Marianist Studies Subjects” for titles

2. Organizational Documentation of Marianist Foundations

These consist of canonical, juridical, and other official documents needed for the operation of a religious organization, as well as documents generated by daily operations.  This type of writing is intended only for the members of the specific organizations.

See section entitled “Marianist Organizational Documentation

3. Writings about Marianist Studies

The titles in this class seek to interpret and apply the primary sources found in the first group. Marianist Study titles are more likely to be accessible to a general readership especially in the case of titles written after 1980.

See section entitled “Marianist Studies Subjects” for titles

4. Histories of Marianist Organizations and Biographies of Members

With few exceptions, these are in-house efforts aimed at members of the Society of Mary as an audience. Consequently, they assume the reader knows what is being described in general and concentrate instead on minutiae.  Most are volunteer efforts lacking in peer review and scholarly apparatus. Titles in this category are likely to be tedious to a general readership.

See section entitled “Marianist Studies Subjects” for titles

5. Writings by Marianists on General Subjects

These writings reflect the interests of individual Marianists and range widely in subject. They are retained theoretically as a way of tracking the application of the Marianist charism to the times, but in actual fact are of interest only because their authors live in the same house as the reader. 


Marianist Organizational Documentation

List of the Major Marianist Organizations

This list is not exhaustive but names the major foundations in hierarchical order.

Communities of Consecrated Life (“Religious Orders”)

Society of Mary (SM)

Daughters of Mary Immaculate (FMI)

Vowed Communities Related to the Marianists

Les Dames de la Miséricorde (de Lamourous’ foundation)

Brothers of the Beloved Disciple (Fr. George Montague’s foundation)

Sisters of the Beloved Disciple (Fr. George Montague’s foundation)

Sodalicio de Vida Cristiana de Peru

Vowed Communities outside Religious Life

Alliance Mariale


State Community of the United States

Congregation-Estado de Maria Immaculada (CEMI), Peru

Marianist Family Governance

World Marianist Family Council

Includes SM, FMI, Alliance Mariale, Lay Communities

International Organization of Marianist Lay Communities

Includes only Lay Communities

National and Regional Marianist Family Councils

Includes only Lay Communities

Documentary Forms Particular to Religious Foundations

Some of these types are common to all religious orders, though often under other names; and knowing only their titles will not always allow the lay person to correctly discern their nature. It is not likely that any of these would be of use to a Catholic Studies program. The list is provided by way of demonstration.

Constitutions and Rules of Life

General or Provincial Chapter Proceedings, Acts

Circular Letters of Major Superiors

Ceremonials and Rituals

Customs Books or Directories

Formularies of Prayers





Marianist Studies Subjects

Subjects of Particular Interest

The subjects below have been of particular interest to Marianists because they are perceived to embody the “charism,” that is, the divinely intended identity of the institute. While several of these subjects will be common to all Catholics, they have a formulation that is proper to the Marianists.

Charism – “Charism,” that is, the divinely intended identity of the institute which is regarded as being a “gift” from God usually communicated through private revelation to a choice soul selected to be a founder.

Mariology – Father Chaminade held that God had reserved to Mary the great victory over the heresy of our time which he described as “irreligion and the spirit of unbelief.”  He positioned the Marianist organizations “to labor under her orders and combat at her side at the great work of restoring faith and morals in our age.”

Spirit of Faith – The spirit of faith was for Father Chaminade the beginning of the road to holiness and the most important attitude to develop and sustain in an age of secularity where God and religion were held to be irrelevant.

Marianist Direction – In the present context, the term “direction” refers to spiritual direction or to the counselling of individual persons in the work of knowing oneself, knowing God, and growing in virtue.

System of Virtues – The “system” or “chain” of virtues is a technique developed by Father Chaminade for synthesizing the ascetical practice of the Desert Fathers into a form accessible to people living in modern urban society. Chaminade wrote before the invention of modern psychological science, so he did not have that language available to him. Instead he borrows the language of the Desert Fathers which he uses to describe specific behaviors making it possible for the modern reader to understand him. 

Mixed Composition – This term “mixed composition” refers to the combining in one monastic community members who are priests, white collar laymen and blue collar laymen while having social equality among all three.

Three Offices – The “three offices” constitute an irreducible governing structure to assure that Marianist organizations remain faithful to their mission and resist deviation into the spirit of the age.

Marianist Pedagogy – This concerns the ends of Marianist education efforts more than the means.  (However, Chaminade outlined several techniques for influencing the character development of students as well as some for teaching subjects.  During his young adulthood he had taught Math and physical science to middle and high school students.)

Some Recommended Books

The Writings of W. J. Chaminade or so-called “Ecrits Series”

Writings on Direction, in 4 volumes, Dayton, 1966-69, 1981

Writings on Mary, in 2 volumes, Dayton, 1980

Writings on Mental Prayer, 1 volume, Dayton, 1979

Writings on Faith, in 2 volumes, Dayton, 2005

The Chaminade Legacy, in 7 volumes, Dayton, 2006-2016

Letters of William Joseph Chaminade, in 8 volumes, Dayton, 1972-1993

Aguilera, Enrique and Jose-Maria Arnaiz; Enfleshing the Word: Prayer and the Marianist

Spiritual Journey; (NACMS, 2000)

Benlloch, Eduardo; Chaminade’s Message Today; (NACMS monograph 45, 2001)

Benlloch, Eduardo; Origins of the Marianist Family: Notes on Marianist History; (NACMS, 2010)

Fleming, David; A New Fulcrum; (NACMS, 2014)

Gascón, Antonio; Reason, Revelation, and Faith of the Heart; (NACMS monograph 54, 2007)

Hakenewerth, Quentin; Growing in the Virtues of Jesus Christ (San Antonio, 1997)

Hakenewerth, Quentin; The Great Design of God’s Love (San Antonio, 1997)

Lackner, Joseph, Virtues for Mission; (NACMS, 2003)

Lackner, Joseph; Marianist Charism and Educational Mission; (Madrid, 2014)

Moulin, Charles-Henri; Identity of Marianist Education: Roots and Heritage; (Madrid, 2017)

Stefanelli, Joseph; Our Marianist Heritage; (NACMS, 2003)

Marianist Biography

Chaminade, Guillaume-Joseph, 1761-1850

Simler, Joseph; William Joseph Chaminade: Founder of the Marianists; translated by Joseph

Roy, Dayton, 1986

Vasey, Vincent; Chaminade: Another Portrait; Dayton, 1987

Verrier, Joseph; Jalons: the English Translation of Jalons d’ Histoire sur la Route de Guillaume-

Joseph Chaminade, volumes 1 to 4; Dayton, 2001

Lamourous, Marie Thérèse Charlotte de, 1754-1836

Stefanelli, Joseph; Mlle. de Lamourous: A Resource on Marie Thérèse Charlotte de Lamourous;

Dayton, 1998

Batz de Trenquelléon, Adele de, 1789-1828

Stefanelli, Joseph; Adele: a Biography of Adèle de Trenquelléon; Dayton, 1980

Deposits of Marianist Documents

Blume Library Marianist Collection

The Marianist Collection is fully cataloged and items may be found through the Library Catalog. The items in the Marianist Collection are cataloged using a unique call number system designed specifically for Marianist materials. Resources include Marianist periodicals; books by and about Marianists; biographies of members of the Society of Mary, including our founder, William Joseph Chaminade; histories of the Daughters of Mary Immaculate and the Society of Mary; and information about Marianist activities and organizations throughout the world. The Marianist Collection is located on the 2nd Floor of the Louis J. Blume Library, next to the art exhibit area.

National Archives Marianist Province of the US (NAMPUS)

The NAMPUS has a large collection of Marianist documents that might have some of the more recent titles than the Blume collection but not as many of the older or rare specimens as does NACMS.

North American Center for Marianist Studies (NACMS)

NACMS is located in Dayton, Ohio on the Mount Saint John property.  It is maintained by the Marianist Province of the United States.

NACMS Library

The NACMS library has over 3,000 volumes and is the largest collection of Marianist-oriented books, periodicals, and unbound material in the English-speaking world. An on-line catalog is available that allows basic search.

NACMS Bookstore

Bookstore Categories:

·  Adèle de Batz de Trenquelléon (14)

·  Community Resources (23)

·  Marianist Heroes (11)

·  Marianist History/Thought (35)

·  Marie Thérèse de Lamourous (8)

·  SM and FMI Documents (20)

·  Spirituality and Mary (39)

·  Things Marianist and Talking Points (33)

·  William Joseph Chaminade (23)

NACMS Resources

The Resources site allows the user to download entire documents that exist in electronic format only. These are for the most part different titles than those on the bookstore site. One can download the NACMS Newsletter from this site.