The Bethany Association is open to anyone who considers himself or herself to be a friend of the Mission. It is an association of people who have extended their friendship to the MDM Community through their presence, their prayer, their interest, volunteer time or financial support. By the simple action of entering their name into the Bethany Association, a person lets our Community know that he or she considers themselves to be a friend, and that is a great joy to us.
There are no meetings or dues. Membership does not require that someone live close by; in fact some Bethany members have never set foot on our property. But even if the structure is simple, we wanted the bonds of friendship joining us to be strong. Creating the Bethany Association was our way of strengthening those bonds.
Because our fellowship with God and with each other grows stronger in a special way during Mass, and indeed, any time that we pray together, or for each other, Bethany Associates and their intentions are remembered in our daily prayers as a Community, and as the particular intention of our Mass every Sunday. As a visible sign and reminder, we have placed the Bethany Members Book next to the Altar in the Chapel of the Most Blessed Sacrament. And finally, at Christmas, as a special gift, we offer a novena of Masses from Christmas Eve through New Year’s Day for our Bethany friends.
The choice of the name “Bethany” comes from the fact that Bethany was the home of Martha, Mary Magdalene and their brother Lazarus. These people were not just Jesus’ disciples, they were His friends. They welcomed Jesus and wanted Him to feel at home at Bethany. MDM wanted to acknowledge that there are many people who have extended friendship to the Community. Many are the people who made us feel at home here when we first arrived. Others are of more recent acquaintance. Still others are people who know us through our Meditations and on-line presence and say that they feel drawn to pray for the Mission. We want all these people to feel part of the Mission, to be joined to us through prayer and friendship, no matter where they live.