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Ave Maria Press Unveils New Logo to Kick Off 150th Anniversary Year

January 12, 2015

NOTRE DAME, Ind.—Ave Maria Press is commemorating our 150th anniversary in 2015 with a new look.

An apostolate of the Congregation of Holy Cross, United States Province of Priests and Brothers, Ave Maria Press is unveiling a fresh, new company logo as part of our anniversary celebration.  The logo reflects Ave’s Marian heritage and devotion, emphasizing Ave (the first word of the “Hail Mary” in Latin) in our name and including a light-blue graphic image of the turning pages of a book.

Ave was founded by Rev. Edward Sorin, C.S.C., with the publication of the first Ave Maria magazine on May 1, 1865, twenty-three years after he founded the University of Notre Dame. Fr. Sorin wanted the magazine to honor the Virgin Mary, focus on Catholic families, and showcase the best American Catholic writing. The first issue was a sixteen-page weekly edited by Fr. Sorin himself. Many had doubts about whether the publication would survive, but it did for more than a hundred years and at one time was the most popular Catholic magazine in the country.

Fr. Sorin believed that The Ave Maria magazine would “be the source of most abundant blessings, one of the best things ever done in the Congregation, and ultimately a glorious work for our Blessed Mother.”

We believe Fr. Sorin would be proud of his legacy today. “Planning for our anniversary has given all of us at Ave Maria Press a welcome opportunity to step back from our day-to-day work and reflect on the history and legacy of the wonderful publishing ministry that Fr. Sorin founded 150 years ago during a very different era,” said Thomas Grady, publisher of Ave Maria Press. “Fr. Sorin might be mystified by the way we create and distribute our work in a digital era (as I frequently am!), but I hope he would recognize that we have remained faithful to our mission to proclaim the Gospel, serve the spiritual needs of the Church, and join the Congregation of Holy Cross as ‘educators in the faith.’”

Rev. Anthony Szakaly, C.S.C., president of the Ave board of directors, agrees: “Fr. Sorin’s vision of deepening the faith remains the basis for everything that Ave Maria Press does today.”

Ave is a leader in publishing Catholic high school religion textbooks, parish resources, and books on prayer and spirituality under the Ave Maria Press, Sorin Books, Forest of Peace, and Christian Classics imprints.

“As the magazine evolved into Ave Maria Press, this ministry has touched the lives of countless individuals throughout the world who have been privileged to be inspired by the words of some of the best spiritual writers of our time,” said Rev. Thomas J. O’Hara, C.S.C., provincial superior of the U.S. Province. “In a world where so many search for guidance in their lives or grasp for spiritual insights, Ave Maria Press has become a leader in providing such guidance.”

In the tradition of Holy Cross, Ave strives to make God known, loved, and served through the spiritual, pastoral, and catechetical books that are at the core of our publishing mission.

The Ave Maria magazine ceased publication in 1970, but the publishing ministry continues to flourish. Ave Maria Press remains one of the oldest, continually operating Catholic publishing houses in the country. Among our highly acclaimed titles are Lisa M. Hendey’s The Handbook for Catholic Moms; The Artist’s Rule by Christine Valters Paintner; Rebuilt by Michael White and Tom Corcoran; A Book of Hours by Thomas Merton; and Basil Moreau: Essential Writings, edited by Revs. Kevin Grove, C.S.C., and Andrew Gawrych, C.S.C.

Perennial reader favorites include:

  • Together for Life by Joseph Champlin with Rev. Peter Jarret, C.S.C. – Ave’s all-time bestseller
  • Praying Our Goodbyes by Joyce Rupp
  • With Open Hands by Henri Nouwen
  • Riding the Dragon by Robert Wicks
  • Encountering Jesus in the New Testament and This Is Our Faith by Michael Pennock

This year we are introducing two new textbooks approved by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops: Jesus and the Church and Foundations of Catholic Social Teaching.

There will be several events in the coming months to celebrate Ave’s 150th anniversary, including an open house at our 1865 Moreau Drive, Notre Dame, Indiana, offices on April 30, 2015. On May 1, the actual date of Ave’s founding by Fr. Sorin, there will be a Mass and dinner at Moreau Seminary on the campus of Notre Dame. The Mass will be celebrated by the Most Rev. Kevin C. Rhoades, bishop of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend (Indiana), with Ave staff and their spouses, board members past and present, and members of the Congregation of Holy Cross in attendance.

In addition, Ave’s staff has compiled a commemorative history that will be published prior to the official anniversary. There will also be special anniversary promotions for customers throughout the year. Find out more at

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