Who are the Presentation Brothers?
The Presentation Brothers are an international Roman Catholic Congregation of religious brothers working in several countries.
We are men who believe that Jesus Christ is calling us to serve him and his people in a radical way. We live our baptismal promises through sharing all that we earn and by devoting our lives to the service of people. We take three vows; chastity, poverty and obedience and we live together in small groups called communities where we support one another and live out this challenging lifestyle.
What do the Brothers do?
We are teachers, social workers, pastoral workers, chaplains. Regardless of the work we do, it is all “Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam”- for the greater glory of God.
Where do the Brothers work?
Today, we work in Ghana, Nigeria, West Indies (Grenada), USA, Canada, Ireland, and England.
Why should somebody join the Brothers today?
A man joins the Presentation Brothers in response to a call from Christ (this is called a vocation). He dedicates his life to God (just like Blessed Edmund Rice). He gives of himself so that others may live more wholesome lives and in doing so shows that all men and women are brothers and sisters of Christ.
We take our name from the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Temple.
Mary, the Mother of God, was a Jew and, following tradition, was taken by her parents, Anne and Joachim, to the Temple at a young age. Mary presented her life to God. In the same way, we, Presentation Brothers, try to present God to the world in which we live.
The Presentation Brothers were founded in Waterford by a businessman, Edmund Rice, in 1802. Edmund had been married. However, his wife Mary Elliott, died while giving birth to their only child. After his wife’s death Edmund drew closer to God in prayer.
After his wife’s death, he decided to devote his life entirely to God. He gathered a number of men around him and together they opened a school in a converted horse stable. Edmund’s goal was to provide a Catholic education to the youngsters on the streets of the city. The Brothers have continued this mission for 200 years.
May 5th is Blessed Edmund Rice’s Feast Day.
Why “Presentation” Brothers?
Edmund Rice chose the name “Presentation Brothers” to honour the “Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary”. This was a Jewish tradition in which Mary was brought to the Temple by her parents, Anne and Joachim. Mary presented her life to God and, later, presented Jesus to the world. In the same way the Brothers try to present Jesus to the world in which they live. The Feast of the Presentation of Mary, November 21st, is a day of celebration for the entire Presentation Family.
What do the symbols represent?
These are the emblems of the Congregation. The sigillum of the Presentation Brothers (left) depicts the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Temple. She is accompanied by her parents. The Latin words along the edge mean “Symbol of the Brothers of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary”. “Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam” written on the bottom means “For the Greater Glory of God”.
The second emblem we use sums up the mission of the Brothers in the statement, “Forming Christ in the Young”.