Marianist Community | Marianist Educational Associates


August 27, 2009 6:50 – 8 pm, Marianist Hall

Members Present: David Anderson, Barbara Belle, Grissel Benitez-Hodge, Bro. Jerry Bommer, Dave Coleman, Val Coleman, Br. Frank Damm, Mike Fassiotto, Peggy Friedman, Patti Lee-Robinson, Sharon LePage, Larry Osborne, Mary Pat Sjostrom, Kay Stone, Curtis Washburn
Guest: Fr. Tim Eden

Bro. Jerry opened with a prayer.


Bro. Jerry read from the Characteristics of Marianist Education, “Educate for Peace and Justice (41.) Committed to the common good, the Marianist university affirms the sacredness of human life from its beginning until its natural death. The Marianist university shows its commitment to human dignity, and to a just and peaceful society, first by establishing for itself just institutional policies and structures. Without effective administration guided by just policies, the university community cannot hope to commend to others what they themselves do not practice. The university’s policies and practices insure fairness in the evaluation and compensation of its members, as well as in the assignment of responsibilities and the resolution of conflicts. Such policies and practices promote solidarity, reconciliation, and cooperation in the educational community and ultimately contribute to creating communities in which peace is lasting.”


  • Bro. Jerry agreed that it is a challenge to us to treat employees justly and to preach and practice social justice.
  • Dave C. said that in his experience with personnel questions or issues, it never starts with how do we get rid of this person; with the senior administration, it’s can we understand what’s happening and how can we help this person. This is an example of the kind of institution we try to be, both compassionate and just.
  • Bro. Frank commented that the Administration starts in that vein, but there is the question of whether it goes to the lawyers, where they must think differently.
  • Grissel said that it is a problem at times with misunderstandings; with difficult decisions, some say we can’t do that because it is not Marianist or Catholic.
  • Mike F. agreed with Grissel. In past years, faculty and staff only brought up Catholic and Marianist when told “no.” But now it is also brought up in positive situations.
  • Bro. Jerry added that it is our culture to respect each individual and that a weakness as Marianists is to not be hard enough.

Commitment and Recommitment Ceremony:
Wednesday, September 30, 2009 at Mystical Rose Oratory. Volunteers for the committee are Kay, David A., Barb, and Dave C.
Ideas to have more people attend:

  • Focus on birthday of Society of Mary
  • Paper invitations to lay Marianist students, Campus Ministry students, Religious Studies majors/minors
  • Bro. Jerry will give UPAC members the MUM report of the June 2009 gathering which provides a very detailed description of the MEAs.
  • Short explanation of what MEAs are at ceremony
  • Ask Kapono to do a news blurb
  • Ask faculty to invite students
  • Send out MEA testimonials, one per week. Put testimonials on MEA web page with email link.

MUM Report, June 2009:
The report was sent to all MEAs.
Challenges include:
1. develop sufficient clarity of purpose (help the Rector meet his goals)
2. systematic approach for formation in the Catholic and Marianist traditions

  • Bro. Jerry will continue to invite speakers.
    • Bro. Ray Fitz and Bro. Tom Giardino?
    • Bro. Steve Glodek during the Inauguration dates?
    • Fr. George Cerneglia?
  • Val suggested VLCFF courses. Kay and Dave C. will talk to Sr. Angela Ann about a longer term and/or hybrid course.
  • Dave C. will organize topics in Charism and will present it at the next meeting (readings and discussion at monthly meeting).
  • Are there CDs available? NACMS audio? Videotapes?
  • Suggested method of smaller modules with discussion.
  • What do the other universities do?

3. need to understand and engage the University culture; be cultural catalysts

  • Mary Pat is concerned about faculty lack of understanding about Marianists and being a Catholic institution. She suggests inviting faculty to dinner at Hale Malia and/or Marianist Hall. Grissel said that events to be celebrated (tenure, awards, birthdays) could be the reason for the dinner invitation. Dinner committee volunteers are Mary Pat, Peggy, Fr. Tim and Bro. Frank.
  • Grissel and David A. said that MEAs should respond, clarify and speak out when misinformation is presented.
  • David A. suggested a faculty/staff newspaper with a MEA column.
  • Bro. Jerry has distributed The Marianists of Kalaepohaku booklet to each department.
  • We need to be more systematic and intentional.

MEAs were asked to think about the following challenges:

    • weave our diverse efforts into a common mission
    • develop good practices of accountability
    • clarify and make transparent the selection and recruiting process for MEAs - leadership by MEAs

The MEAs prayed for Aulani Kaanoi, Michelle DeCosta and Elaine Oishi.
Val will email the link to the Marianists guide.
Grissel asked everyone to RSVP for the Inauguration events.

The next meeting will be in late September.