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The Father Mazzuchelli Society is an independent lay organization for the New Evangelization. Its core group includes local Catholics in the Madison Diocese. This is at the initial stages and we are interested in learning from the life of Father Mazzuchelli, networking and sharing ideas among lay Catholics who are interested in inviting and attracting people to follow Jesus more closely within the Catholic Church and to discover and live their vocation. If you supply your email we can keep you updated.

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Another way to participate is to join in the conversation on our blog.

We have published a handsome and low cost edition of Venerable Samuel Mazzuchelli’s Memoirs and we urge people to get a copy and draw from this well good lessons and inspiration for the New Evangelization from a warm, courageous and absolutely tireless missionary. Get your parish priest a copy, and any seminarians you know. This book greatly deserves to be more widely read.

Above all we hope to encourage Catholics in loving God and their neighbor, going to Mass and confession, following all the precepts of the Church, engaging in the corporal and spiritual works of mercy and witnessing to the Gospel in both deed and word.

We do also have some particular practices to propose

  1. Pray. Every day, of course. Mental prayer and lectio divina are most important. We also like to pray the rosary, especially the joyful mysteries, and sometimes  the chaplet of the Seven Sorrows of Mary which was a particular devotion of Father Mazzuchelli. The reason we recommend the Joyful Mysteries is because this has been especially associated with our project from the beginning and we associate it with all that has been good with the Sinsinawa Dominican sisters, and our desires that they should have all the joy there is in the great, mysterious and tender gift of the Incarnation. In your charity you may want to seek a plenary indulgence for holy Dominican souls in purgatory, for instance by reading Sacred Scripture for half an hour, or half an hour of Eucharistic Adoration, or a public recitation of the Rosary, and fulfill the other requirements: Holy Communion, Confession within a couple weeks before or after, praying for the intentions of the Holy Father, and making an act of detachment from all sin.
  2. Fast. You could fast one day, taking one simple meal in the afternoon or evening. We do not do enough of this, and as a result of avoiding penance Christian conversion remains too often at a surface level and we have not much zeal. There are no contemplatives without sacrifice, and no missionaries without sacrifice. Father Mazzuchelli wrote (and one has to smile) before he went off into the wilderness he decided it was advisable to learn to sleep on the ground. He writes of himself in the third person: “To acquire this physical accomplishment it was only necessary to make the experiment in his own room. The first night of making this test, although two blankets were between him and the floor, he was compelled after many hours to take refuge in his ordinary bed, but on the next night, having finally fallen asleep upon the floor, he continued to find repose there every night for about two months, thus making sure of a couch anywhere without expense.” There is, entirely doubtless, some sacrifice that would make you better suited to going beyond what is comfortable, to do the unique mission and works of mercy God is calling you to. We are all called to be proclaimers of the Gospel, somehow.
  3. Give Alms. We encourage giving for sisters’ retirement, either directly to the Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa (you can say “for the retirement fund”) or directly to some other sisters, or to the Retirement Fund for Religious, or etc. Do not harden your heart, this is a serious need. Giving to promote religious vocations is also very good, there is an organization called Imagine Sisters Movement which is doing innovative, beautiful, and effective work to promote vocations right now, and there is a group called Mater Ecclesiae Fund for Vocations which helps those who have a vocation and want to enter the convent, but have student debt they need to pay off. It is also right and necessary to give to help the poor. In fact if you practically never do, then especially that is what you should do now.
  4. Pray for the Beatification of Father Samuel Mazzuchelli. This is his official prayer:
    LORD JESUS, you called your servant, Samuel, even in early youth, to leave home and all for a Dominican life of charity in preaching your holy gospel. You gave him abundant graces of Eucharistic love, devotion to your holy Mother of Sorrows, and a consuming zeal for souls. Grant, we beseech you, that his fervent love and labors for you may become more widely known, to a fruitful increase of your Mystical Body, to his exaltation and to our own constant growth in devoted love of you Who with the Father and the Holy Spirit live and reign one God, world without end. Amen.