Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Bishop Dewane Keynotes Ave Maria University Scholarship Benefit

More good news! Looks like the good bishop is set to speak at an annual benefit dinner that funds a scholarship established in Terri Schiavo Schindler's honor. The scholarship is exclusively for students attending Ave Maria University. From the Naples News:

My Jesus Mercy Ministries will host a benefit dinner for Ave Maria University’s pre-theologate program on Feb. 5 at St. Raphael’s Parish Hall in Lehigh Acres. The dinner will be held in memory of Terri Schiavo, the St. Petersburg woman who died in 2005 after a high-profile battle between her husband and parents about removing her from life support. The dinner costs $40 to attend with proceeds going toward a scholarship program in Schiavo’s name at Ave Maria for those interested in a priestly vocation. Religious art and books will be available as well with a portion of the sales going toward the scholarship fund. The dinner will be held from 7 to 10 p.m. Diocese of Venice Bishop Frank Dewane will serve as the event’s guest speaker.
Amen. Don't be surprised when you see more great news about the cooperation between the bishop and AMU - who clearly play for the same team!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

New Independent Video Documents Founding of Ave Maria, Florida

From the dream of one...comes a community built upon Catholic doctrine. Ave Maria is now officially open and during our three-day documentary series, we examine the impact on the residents and the outward secular surroundings of Southwest Florida. We interview new residents, returning students, and highlight the businesses arriving in the fledgling town. Meet the creators, listen to the believers, and see for yourself...Ave Maria, in the beginning. - Naples Daily News

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Crowds Pack Ave Maria Oratory and Prep School Events

Two events were held today in Ave Maria, Florida, for the "friends" of all things Ave Maria.

The Ave Maria Grammar & Preparatory School held a Mass, tour and picnic with a capacity crowd of several hundred. Plenty of smiling faces basking in the glow of such a wonderful accomplishment: the founding of this wonderful school under the helm of headmaster Dr. Dan Guernsey.

Later on, town and university founder Tom Monaghan keynoted a presentation inside the new oratory located in the center of town. The building is amazing, inside and out. The tabernacle is one of the few interior appointments that is complete, other than the pews. As with most large churches through the ages, the rest will come over time as donors come forward. [On the right of this page you can click to view a virtual video tour of the finished oratory.]

Of particular note, Tom told the capacity crowd of over 1000 that prior to construction Bishop Nevins (now retired) approved construction of the large oratory in the center of the new town - and the bishop considered it a welcome addition to the diocese because he would not have to staff a parish church or pay for its construction. The town and university community continue to pray that his successor bishop and the university administration will hammer out the details on making optimum use of this wonderful house of prayer. Meanwhile the town continues to enjoy Mass several times a day, seven days a week, just a few hundred feet away on campus.

Another anecdote indicating God's providence is at work: a visitor on Friday who happens to be a professional opera singer visited the oratory and wandered inside. He asked the work crew inside if he could test the acoustics. He began singing near the ambo area - Panis Angelicus - as a crowd formed inside to listen. Unbeknownst to the singer, the work crew continued in their work just behind him while he sang: installation of the beautiful new tabernacle. The tabernacle itself has a providential story behind it, but we can save that for another day.

Ave Maria continues to bask in God's abundant blessings.


Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Women’s Benedictine Monastery Planned in Ave Maria, FL

Queen of Peace Monastery continues to move slowly toward construction, as the Benedictine Sisters gracefully face obstacles. The Monastery is to be built in a style based on “traditional monastic architecture,” and the church will “welcome those persons who wish to participate in the Divine Office,” sung five times a day.

While some of the Sisters of Queen of Peace Monastery will be a part of Ave Maria University, many will serve God in other ways. These sisters share the town with the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist, a few of whom teach at Ave Maria Grammar and Prep.

You can contribute to the creation of Queen of Peace Monastery by purchasing a brick for the building. Please read their newsletter by visiting their website, at http://www.queenofpeace.info/