Supporting Vocations


Father Calloway's New DVD, Mary 101

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With the recent publication and success of his bestselling book Champions of the Rosary: The History and Heroes of a Spiritual Weapon, Fr. Donald Calloway is not resting on his laurels. Instead, in addition to his normal duties as vocations director, he is busy giving interviews and talks around the country on his new book and he has also recently completed several large projects on the Blessed Virgin Mary.

First, a DVD for Marian Press entitled Mary 101, which is essentially an introduction to the Blessed Mother.

"I wanted to give the basics of Marian spirituality," Fr. Calloway said, "especially because this is the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Mary in Fatima so there will be a lot of talk about Our Lady this year."

Father Calloway said that Pope Francis will be visiting Fatima in May and some dioceses have even declared this a Marian Year in honor of the Fatima apparitions.

In Mary 101, Fr. Calloway introduces viewers to the four Marian dogmas — that Mary is the Mother of God; that she is a perpetual virgin; that she is the Immaculate Conception; and her Assumption into Heaven. The DVD also covers some of the Marian doctrines such as Mary's spiritual maternity.

"She is our mother in the spiritual life," Fr. Donald said, "and she is also the mediatrix of grace and intercedes for us before the throne of God as the Queen of Heaven."

Father Donald said the most important thing he wants viewers to take away from Mary 101 is that Mary is our mother and she is a great gift from God.

"We have this tender, gentle, loving mother whom we can turn to in all of our needs," he said. "Pope Francis said that Christians who don't have Mary in their life are like orphans. And the Christian understanding of Mary as Mother and God the Father as our father means we are part of a family."

In addition to the DVD, Fr. Calloway has just edited a new Mariological journal, Mater Misericordiae .

"The Province of the Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary decided to publish the journal as a living memorial for the Year of Mercy," he explained, "and every year they will publish articles, both academic and devotional, dedicated to Our Lady."

This first publication, entitled Mother of Mercy, has three sections. The first section contains feature articles that are more academic in tone, he said. This year's edition has an article by Fr. Calloway on the Virgin Mary and the spirituality of St. Faustina, as well as an article by Dr. Robert Stackpole on the virtues of Mary, specifically the virtues of mercy and sorrow. The second section of the journal retrieves wisdom from the tradition; for example, in this issue they have featured writings from St. John Eudes because he was a great promoter of the mercy of God. And the last section of Mater Misericordiae is devoted to wisdom from the popes — this issue has material from John Paul II and from Pope Francis.

Father Calloway said the journal is academic, but it is accessible for everyone. "We sent copies of the journal to 28 Catholic university libraries," he said, "and it's also a great resource for priests to use for their homilies."

Lastly, Fr. Calloway developed a new pamphlet for Marian Press on the Five First Saturdays devotion, which was part of the Fatima apparitions. Essentially, Our Lady told the three shepherd children of Fatima that Heaven desired to establish devotion to her Immaculate Heart as a way of bringing peace in the world. The apparitions of Fatima took place in 1917, but in 1925, Our Lady also appeared to Sr. Lucia, when she was a cloistered nun. Our Lady told Sr. Lucia about a particular form of devotion in reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary known as the "First Five Saturdays." Essentially, the practice requires four things: going to Confession, receiving Communion, praying a set of the mysteries of the Rosary, and meditating on the mysteries of the Rosary for 15 minutes.

"When people think about Fatima, they think about the spinning sun or the children, but the Five First Saturdays devotion has almost been forgotten," Fr. Calloway said. "This year, the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Fatima, would be a great time to start this practice again," he added. "This type of devotion will help a lot of people grow in their faith and in their love for Our Lady."

You can order Fr. Calloway's new DVD, the Mariological Journal, and the Five First Saturdays pamphlet through his website.

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