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Caption-What is the Society of Mary

The Society of Mary is dedicated to the glory of God and the Holy incarnation of Christ under the invocation of Our Lady, Help of Christians.

Mary, Mother of the Lord Jesus is by far the most popular and beloved of all the saints. Churches throughout the world honor her with chapels, altars and shrines. The book of Common Prayer honors her with four special feastdays, to which is added several other in many places. It is fitting that there be within the Anglican Communion, a society which honors the Blessed Virgin Mary, and bears witness to the mystery of Christ's Holy Incarnation.

The Scriptures tell us that Mary is full of grace, and was chosen of God. "Be it unto me according to thy Word," was Mary's joyous response to God's plan of redemption. Her obedience initiated the process of our salvation. In her, "the Word became flesh." She has a unique and special relationship with Jesus, and was close to him during his ministry, and the first miracle was performed at her instigation. On the Cross, Jesus gave her to his disciple John, "Behold, your mother, and thus to all mankind." And on the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit descended upon her and the apostles. She is indeed Mother of the Church. Her word to us is, "Whatsoever He saith unto you, do it!"

The Society of Mary springs from two similar societies founded in 1880 and 1901 respectively, which united in 1931. It has members all over the world and is not confined to Anglicans alone.

Where there are sufficient members in one place or area, they combine to form a Ward, with a priest as Superior and an elected Secretary. They can organize regular services, meetings and many other activities. Five or more members may form a Cell, and organize joint prayer and fellowship. Isolated members are joined to the Headquarters Ward.

The Society publishes its magazine AVE three times each year with details of pilgrimages, retreats, festival services, etc. It is free to all members and is the effective link between the various Regions.

The Society is not affiliated with any single Shrine or Marian institution, and is the only organization endeavoring to promote equally all the different aspects of devotion to Mary.

Information for this section has been provided by the American Region of The Society of Mary and AVE, the magazine of the Society of Mary.

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