The Apostolate of the Press
Besides teaching, the Marian Sisters are also involved in the apostolate of the Catholic Press, and print and publish a variety of publications to help promote the traditional Catholic Faith and the message of Our Lady of Fatima. These include The Reign of Mary, a quarterly Catholic magazine edited by the Marian priests, a Catholic calendar, numerous encyclicals, booklets, pamphlets, and leaflets. The Sisters also staff a mail order house to make traditional Catholic books and other printed materials — as well as religious articles and music — available to Catholics all over the world.
From the earliest days of the Congregation, the Religious operated an apostolic center to distribute literature promoting the message of Our Lady of Fatima. Back then, all of the Congregation’s printing was sent out to a commercial print shop. The center’s mailing list then consisted of about 10,000 names — and every envelope was addressed by hand. Each Sister received a stack of envelopes to address, and the names she wrote represented her “spiritual children,” most of whom she would never see in this life. Nevertheless, with each envelope she addressed she made an act of love with the intention of gaining graces for them all.
As the number of Sisters grew, they themselves began to do more of the work on their publications. Little by little, the Sisters learned to use the electric folder, the stitcher, the darkroom camera, and even the printing presses. But it wasn’t until 1978, when the Congregation acquired Mount St. Michael, that they had a place set aside as their own print shop. Located in the basement of the Mount, it was first operated by the Marian priests and Brothers. Eventually the Sisters took over this work, enabling the priests to concentrate on editorial functions and assisting in parishes around the country.
In the early 1980’s, the print shop moved to its present location in a building that formerly housed the Jesuits’ bakery and laundry facilities. Through the years, the Sisters were able to acquire equipment that has greatly assisted them in their work — stitchers, folders, platemakers, a graphic arts camera, an electronic duplicator, several computers, and two presses. Eventually, as technology changed, the presses were replaced with large multi-function color copiers. And over the past decade, the apostolate has expanded to include the modern technology of the Internet, a medium that is capable of reaching millions of people all over the world.
“Go teach all nations,” Our Lord commanded his disciples. Through the publishing apostolate, the Marian Sisters take part in the missionary work of the Church by assisting the clergy to teach and spread the true Faith far and wide. Souls who perhaps would not have otherwise been exposed to the truth can learn about Christ’s one true Church through materials printed and distributed by the diligent hands of Sisters — zealous women who are well aware that it is by personal sacrifice, humble obedience and a fervent prayer life that they can earn the graces to win souls back to Christ and repair for the sins of mankind.