The Marian Forum

By Maureen Schlangen

Among the world’s foremost authorities on the study of the Blessed Virgin Mother, the Marian Library is leveraging traditional and emerging media to attract students, share expertise and invite conversation and collaboration for people to better know, love and serve Mary.

The Marian Forum, an interactive conference started in the fall of 2015, serves to illustrate. With participation both in person and online, the forum has tripled in attendance since its first session, reaching 21 states and 15 foreign countries in the fall 2016 session.

“We recognized that time, distance and cost are three barriers to participation,” said International Marian Research Institute lecturer and researcher Gloria Dodd. “We found that we could overcome those by offering the Forum in two-hour sessions for free, providing the papers being presented in advance and inviting participation and questions via a chat box.”

The sessions include a one-hour presentation by up to three invited experts, followed by an hour of questions, answers and discussion. Following the Forum and a scholarly review of the presented papers, the International Marian Research Institute publishes the papers.

“This ongoing, more frequent format allows fresh, new research and creativity in furthering the study and teaching of Mariology,” Dodd said.

Read more about the forum online. A recap of the April 7, 2017 Marian Forum is on the Marian Library blog.

— Maureen Schlangen, e-scholarship and communications manager

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