The Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity (SOLT) is a society of apostolic life, an international missionary community composed of priests, consecrated sisters and brothers, and lay members serving together on ecclesial teams in areas of deepest need.
Founded in 1958 by Fr. James Flanagan, SOLT’s vision and charism anticipated many of the movements of Vatican II, including the role of the laity in evangelization, the significance of Our Lady’s relationship with each Person of the Trinity, and communion as the foundation of all renewal within the Church.
Saint John Paul II said, “God, in his deepest mystery, is not a solitude but a family…since He has in himself fatherhood, son-ship and the essence of family, which is love.” We are called to communion. Each human person, made in the image of the God who is communion, longs for such expression and experience of love.
SOLT was founded to be a tangible manifestation of this Trinitarian reality of communion. As Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity models, we live as she did, from a communion that has its source in God and that extends out to all peoples:
Communion with God in imitation of Mary.
Communion on our teams of priests, consecrated sisters and brothers, and lay faithful.
Communion with all - especially the most abandoned, lonely, isolated and forgotten.
The fulfillment of the desires of the human heart for communion can be found only in God, and in our participation as a family in His inner life. People intuitively know this communion cannot only be spoken about or even merely conceived or crafted…
it must be a lived experience.
Fr. James Flanagan lived a life immersed in both the Trinity and in Mary. Born in Boston, Massachusetts on May 29th, 1924, Ascension Thursday, baptized on Trinity Sunday and called home to God on Holy Thursday 2016, his life was wrapped in the divine mysteries. As a Navy “frogman” (the precursor of the Navy Seals) during WWII and a member of three national championship football teams at Notre Dame, Fr. Jim learned the importance of teamwork and of its immense potential in achieving victories. He entered St. John Seminary in Boston, and it was there that he received a call-within-a-call, to found a missionary community of priests and brothers, sisters and lay faithful, serving together on ecclesial teams in Marian-Trinitarian communion in areas of deepest apostolic need. His vision to include the laity in the evangelizing mission of the Church was a prophetic one: it was confirmed by the groundbreaking teachings on the lay vocation of Vatican II.
The Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity was founded on the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, July 16, 1958, in Holman, New Mexico. Although Fr. Jim always pointed to Our Lady as the foundress, the SOLT community likewise recognizes its foundation in the fidelity of its early members: Fr Jim Flanagan and Fr. John McHugh, and the first sisters and lay families. They left everything to follow Christ, trusting that he was behind this new work and that they were secure in the prayers and care of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Almost 60 years later, SOLT is established in the Church asa Society of Apostolic Life, with hundreds of priests, sisters and lay members serving in over 25 dioceses throughout the world. Although present in areas as diverse as Mexico, Ghana, the Philippines, Belize, Guatemala, Thailand, England, China and the United States, the ecclesial teams of SOLT are united by a common spirituality and goal: all people in union with the Most Holy Trinity by way of discipleship of Jesus through Mary.