Welcome from Fort Myers, FL.
We welcome you to the web page of Mother of Mercy, Fort Myers, FL Chapter.Magnificat, an international ministry to Catholic women, began in 1981 and has formed over 100 Chapters.
Magnificat Prayer Breakfast
Hosted by Fort Myers, FL Mother of Mercy Chapter
April 30. 2022
9:30am – 12:30pm
Doors open at 9:00 a.m. for open seating.
No Reserved Seating
Holiday Inn Airport
at Gulf Coast Town Center
9931 Interstate Commerce Dr
Fort Myers, Florida 33913
NOTE: Reservations for this Meal are NOW Closed
Our Guest Speaker: Father Saji Ellickal
Fr. Saji Ellickal Joseph belongs to a religious congregation called Missionary Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament. The congregation began in 1933 in the Southwest state of India called Kerala, his home state. Father was born and raised in a small mountain city of Kerala called Bisonvalley. His parents, an older brother and a younger sister, both married, live there along with his five nieces and nephews.
When he was fifteen, he completed the 10th grade and joined the Minor Seminary of the Missionary Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament in June 1989 to begin his seminary formation. Studies included Philosophy from 1993 to 1996 and Theology from 1997-to 2000 in the Pontifical Seminary Aluva, Kerala. After completing almost twelve years of formation and education, he was ordained on December 27, 2000. As a newly ordained, he was sent to the Northern State of India, Rajasthan, to start his ministry as the Administrator of a catholic school that his congregation runs and as the pastor of the small church from 2001- to 2005.
Later, he completed a year of studies in Education to become the principal of a school in a different Northern State of India, Maharashtra, where he had a small parish. In 2007 he was sent to the Diocese of Memphis in TN, where he ministered for ten years. In 2017, he came to the Diocese of Venice, where he was appointed as the Parochial Vicar of St. John XXIII in Fort Myers.
In Father Saji’s words: “I really love being a priest and thank the good Lord for trusting me with this divine call to minister to the spiritual needs of the faithful. The most important inspiration for me to be happy is my devotion to the Holy Eucharist and seeking the intercessions of Our Heavenly Mother Mary.”
Prayer ministry is available after the meal.
Since the day is designed to speak to the hearts of women, free of distractions, it is respectfully requested that young children under the age of 14 not be in attendance.
REGISTRATIONS ARE NOW CLOSED FOR THIS MEAL!
Online registration will be available for this Breakfast!!!
Tickets for priests, deacons, religious brothers and sisters are complimentary, but registration is required.
Tickets are $23 and are payable in advance. Registration postmarked by _______. Your cancelled check is your receipt. No onsite registrations are available.
Please Mail Reservation Form and check payable to “Magnificat” to:
REGISTRATIONS FOR THIS MEAL ARE NOW CLOSED
UPCOMING EVENTS FOR OUR CHAPTER —
February 26, 2022 Debbie Herbeck
April 30, 2022 – Father Saji Ellickal
TBA: Maureen Nash
Rosary Blanket of Prayer
Our Chapter is assigned the 8th of the month.
The Magnificat Ministry sponsors a Rosary Blanket of Prayer in response to our Holy Father’s call to prayer. Each Chapter is assigned one day of the month for concentrated prayer, fasting, Eucharistic Adoration, Rosary, etc. Of course, we are called to pray daily, but this day should be especially designated. It can be done individually and collectively, as possible. Magnificat women and others who care to join us are invited to take part in this concerted effort. The general intentions are for a New Pentecost, the Church, Magnificat, the sanctity of life, marriage & family, and world peace.
My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my savior. Luke 1:46-47
OUR PRAYER GROUPS
Is God calling you to be in a Prayer Group? Jesus said “Wherever two or three are gathered in My Name, there I am in their midst.” Our prayer groups are open to all.
Prayer groups are open to all of our Magnificat sisters and their families.
SERVICE TEAM MEMBERS
Felice Gerwitz, Coordinator
Cristina Martinez, Asst. Coordinator
Margaret Mengle, Treasurer
Janice Neyer, Secretary
Spiritual Advisor: Rev. Hugh McGuigan, OSFS
Chapter email: email@example.com
If you would like to be an active part of Ft. Myers Magnificat or would like to be added to our mailing list or if you have a questions or comments for our Service Team, please send your contact information to our Chapter’s email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
HISTORY of Fort Myers Magnificat
Service Team Members
Felice Gerwitz, Coordinator
Cristina Martinez, Assistant Coordinator
Margaret Mengle, Treasurer
Mary Zitnik, Secretary
Fr. Hugh McGuigan, Spiritual Advisor
Visit our Chapter’s website at magnificatfortmyers.com.
Visit our Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/magnificatfortmyers
HISTORY of Mother of Mercy Chapter[Diocese of Venice, FL] Est. December 16, 2004
Our Lord definitely had a plan for this Chapter before its beginning! He set independent events in motion several years before the founding of the Chapter. Margaret Adams, Fernande Benjamin, Virginia Mc Hugh and several others in Southwest Florida were praying weekly for a Marian, Charismatic ministry to start in the Diocese. Mary Zitnik, a vocalist and composer from Chicago, had written a praise song version of the Blessed Mother’s Magnificat before moving to the area in 2000 and she became the music minister at Bob and Cristina Martinez’s “Jesus is Lord” Prayer Group in Ft. Myers.
Gerry Mader and Marilyn Quirk had served simultaneously on the National Service Committee Advisory Council for several years where Lois Ann Mader was introduced to Marilyn. Em Weiss, Lay Spiritual Director for the Catholic Charismatic Renewal had inquired about Magnificat. When Marilyn learned that Lois Ann was moving to Florida in the fall of 2002 she casually said, “I want you to form a Magnificat chapter when you move there.” All this took place as a prelude to Mother of Mercy Chapter.
After moving to Ft. Myers, the Maders were asked to serve on the Diocese of Venice Charismatic Service Team, since both had formal experience serving the Renewal. Lois Ann met with Beryl Kinney, Eastern Regional Rep for Magnificat who wintered in Florida. They invited Em Weiss to a meeting with Mimi Reilly, Bishop Nevins’ representative, to speak about forming a chapter. They were given the go-ahead to form a Discernment Team. The Central Service Team confirmed Em Weiss’ appointment of Lois Ann Mader as Contact Person for the beginning of a Magnificat chapter in the Diocese of Venice.
Beryl provided Lois Ann with the names of several area women to invite to serve on the Discernment Team. Before calling, she prayed and heard, “You will have to dig deep but you will find jewels.” She made many calls with no positive response.
Meanwhile, the Maders became active members of “Jesus is Lord” Prayer Group, where they met Cristina Martinez, Mary Zitnik and Margaret Adams, long-time member of the group. One evening, Mary felt led to share her Magnificat and Lois Ann recognized this as a go-ahead sign from God. She then asked Cristina, Margaret, and Mary to join the Discernment Team. They agreed and were encouraged to invite others to seek God’s direction.
Our Lord’s plan to form this SWFL chapter was truly multinational. The Discernment Team came to include Lois Ann Mader, Mary Zitnik, and Virginia McHugh from the USA, Cristina Martinez from Chile, Margaret Adams from Bermuda, Rosalia Brunco from Italy, Fernande Benjamin from Canada, and Ann Doherty from Scotland. The Regional Representative was Olga Myers who provided encouragement and assistance. As the group met, in addition to studying the Magnificat Constitution and By-Laws at each weekly meeting, one member was asked to share her personal walk with Jesus and this bonded the women. They dubbed themselves, “Super Glue Sisters.” Six of them attended the International Magnificat Conference in New Orleans, LA in September 2003; upon returning, they decided to form a chapter in the diocese.
While waiting for Bishop Nevins’ approval in April, Fr. Jack Smyth, a Redemptorist priest, was asked to meet the Team and to consider becoming the Chapter’s Spiritual Advisor. Much to the Team’s amazement, he asked what he could do to assist in forming the chapter and mentioned that he had dinner with the bishop every Sunday night. Within two weeks, the bishop granted his permission to move forward and appointed Fr. Jack Spiritual Advisor. In June, Em Weiss lead the Team in discerning who would serve on the first official Service Team and in what roles. Lois Ann Mader was named Coordinator. Cristina Martinez and Margaret Adams were to serve as Co-Assistant Coordinators. Fernande Benjamin became Treasurer, Mary Zitnik was named Secretary and Anne Dougherty became Historian. Rosalia Brunco and Virginia McHugh agreed to become regular intercessors. In discerning a name for the Chapter, all but one brought the name “Mother of Mercy;” once again God’s inspiration was clear.
On August 22, a letter was sent to Bishop Nevins, asking him to review the Magnificat Constitution. The Chapter received approval on October 7, (The Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary). Then, off went the official letter to the CST (Central Service Team) to request the Chapter License, which was granted on November 11. Mother of Mercy Chapter was officially incorporated in the state of Florida on December 16, 2004.
Aware of the finances and volunteers needed to host a Meal, the Service Team sponsored a Commissioning Mass followed by an informational coffee about Magnificat on January 22, at Church of the Resurrection of Our Lord in Ft. Myers. Approximately 200 women who were baptized in the Spirit were invited; 100 women came, some became ministry Chairwomen. Fr. Jack Smyth offered the Mass. The first Magnificat Breakfast was held on April 23, at the Holiday Inn Plaza in Ft. Myers. Beryl Kinney was the first speaker.
The “Super Glue Sisters” continued to serve as the Service Team for several years. As Team members have stepped down, Mother of Mercy Chapter has been continually blessed with godly women to serve in their place. This Ft. Myers, Florida Chapter continually seeks to praise and serve God and encourage women to forge lasting relationships with Our Lord, Our Lady and each other, led by the Holy Spirit, under the patronage of Mary, Mother of Mercy.