The St. Mary’s Men’s Literary Society has been meeting for over three decades having been founded in 1981 at St. Mary’s. located in Sparta. The Literary Society meets every Saturday morning at 7:30 during the fall and spring semesters with holiday breaks and a summer vacation. The group numbers at any given time between 10 to 16 members, and includes - or has included - the church rector, businessmen both working for large corporations and others owning their own businesses, clergy from other religions, social workers, college professors, psychologists, dentists, doctors, curators and retirees. Approximately half of the members are parishioners of St. Mary’s, with the remainder either belonging to other religions or denominations or indifferent. Any male is welcome to participate in the group bringing along an open mind, a desire for honest discussion, and an inclusive respect for others opinions regardless of how fervently one may disagree.
The Society was founded for the sole purpose of reading and discussing books of a spiritual nature as differentiated from a religious nature although they do read religious books. They have one guiding rule which is they have no rules, and in concert with this philosophy, they have no leaders and no organization. Each September the group collectively selects the book they will read. Each week a chapter of two is read in preparation for discussion. Some of the books they have read are Original Blessing (Matthew Fox); Letters to Mark About Jesus (Henri Nouwen) ; A Pilgrim at Tinker's Creek (Annie Dillard); and The Care of the Soul (Thomas Moore)
At least once a year, the Society travels to Holy Cross Monastery for a weekend retreat. In addition to participating in the five daily offices of the monks, the group schedules several discussion meetings around their own private reading, hiking, and meditation time.
Speak with Bill Kibildis or Al Vonderahe if you are interested in joining the group.