maryBorn and raised in Westchester, NY  Mary attended Catholic schools through University, so she ‘knew’ her faith and even served on the parish council as the ‘youth representative’… but somewhere along the way, she disconnected, and started to believe that ‘God’ was simply another myth – something of the grown-up-version-of-Santa-Claus.  And as she was beginning a promising career, on the verge of buying herself a ski house, and loving life, she was certainly a ‘good person’ (e.g., she had initiated a company-wide Christmastime ‘adoption’ of, and party for 100 children from area homes for orphans), but she found her happy world crashing in when she faced an unplanned pregnancy… What was most stunning, however, was her unexpected, but deep sense of remorse – an aching feeling of having hurt God…(yes, the same God she had stopped believing in!).  As she cried in her room one day, she was reminded of a quote: “who you are is God’s gift to you … who you become is your gift to God…’,  and her sorrow for having become a disappointment and wounding Him seared her soul – yet at the same moment, she felt what she could only describe as a ‘cosmic hug’ wrap around her, and a sense of God’s merciful love & forgiveness fill her.  From that moment on, she has been ‘crazy in love with God’!!   Her guiding light since then, in decision-making and all aspects of life, has been, ‘what will bring God the most joy?’…    This relationship with Him – one that had decisively traveled from the head to the heart – has been a beautiful love story!

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With His help, she raised her son, Michael, and found motherhood to be the single most amazing gift and purest joy!!!!  There were certainly many challenges, but they savored every second of their life together and had great fun along the way – even traveling to participate in multiple World Youth Days (with John Paul II in Denver, Paris, Rome, Toronto, and then with Benedict XVI in Cologne).  Mary volunteered and served in various roles:  class mother, Confirmation catechist, Boy Scout board member, Speech team judge at Regis High School, Executive Board Member of the United States Naval Academy Parents’ Club, as well as being a Eucharistic Minister, on the Parish Council, Chair of the Adoration Committee, program host on Radio Maria, co-worker with the Sisters of Life, mentor of unwed mothers …  just to name a few….

mwmikeBut another life-changing moment occurred 11 years ago when her son left for Annapolis and she faced the agony of becoming an empty nester – some dear friends invited her to attend a Spiritual Exercises retreat offered by the Legionaries of Christ.  This led to her attending events at the Lumen Institute and learning about Regnum Christi.  As one Father explained it: ‘Whenever Our Lord is asking more of you, it’s because He wants to give you more...’  This was SPOT ON!!!!!    RC is not ‘another thing to do’…. it is a vocation, which is something beautiful: it is a tenderly personal, precious, and priceless gift from Our Lord Himself!!!   Incorporating 10 years ago, RC has helped her deepen in both her love of God, and in her desire to share this treasure with other souls!   She has so taken it to heart that before her work day even begins, Mary has spent time in prayer, attended and been lector at the 6:45 Mass, and spent an hour in her parish’s Adoration chapel, praying for other souls and very specially, for priests – for whom she is so deeply grateful!  Within Regnum Christi, she has been the General Director of Programs at Our Lady of Mt Kisco, facilitator and speaker on Spiritual Exercise retreats, Team Leader, chaperone for the Holy Week Youth Missions in NYC, Tristate Renewal Process Coordinator and Convention Representative, etc., etc.; she has also spiritually adopted the Fathers in Rye and the seminary Brothers studying in Cheshire and Rome.

mwbrsShe is thankful to God for allowing her to experience a ‘taste of heaven on earth’ and giving her this incredible family of ‘sisters and brothers in Christ’ … when with them, she has a tangible awareness of what it must have been like to be a part of the Early Church – which others recognized ‘by their love for one another’!

 

NOTE: On October 11th Mary left to head to the Magdala Center in the Holy Land where she will live and volunteer for a year. Mary will spend this year further discerning starting a cloistered Order of contemplatives whose mission would be to pray for the Legionary of Christ fathers, brothers and her Regnum Christi family.