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Marx, Paul, O.S.B. Papers

Identifier: MC02

Scope and Contents

Collection includes correspondence, diaries, and miscellaneous papers.


  • Majority of material found within 1952 - 1983


Biographical / Historical

Born Benno Marx in St. Michael, Minnesota, on May 8, 1920, Father Paul professed vows as a Benedictine monk on July 11, 1942, continued his seminary studies, and was ordained to the priesthood on June 15, 1947. He was a prefect, teacher, and coach at the prep school where he taught history, religion, and English from 1942 to 1952. He attended The Catholic University of America in 1952 and received a master's degree in sociology in 1954 and a PhD in 1957. His doctoral thesis was on The Life and Work of Virgil Michel, OSB, the Saint John's monk who was a founder of the liturgical movement in the United States. As a teacher of sociology he emphasized the family and became passionately interested in responsible family planning. He founded the Sociology Department at Saint John's University in 1957 and was department chair until 1970. He developed and founded the Human Life Center at Saint John's from 1972 to 1980, and was the founder and senior editor of Review of Natural Family Planning. In 1981 Father Paul founded the Human Life International in Washington, D.C., and served as its leader until 1999. He became the "Apostle for Life" as he was known in the pro-life movement. He also founded the Population Research Institute (1989). He was driven in his belief that life begins at the moment of conception, that life is a sacred gift from God, and that the family is the most important unit of society. His fight was vigorous against abortion, contraception, sterilization, euthanasia, and child abuse. Father Paul authored numerous books, pamphlets, and articles. Book titles included: The Death Peddlers: War on the Unborn (1971); Confessions of a Pro-Life Missionary (1988); Fighting for Life (1989); The Flying Monk: Still Fighting for Life (1990); Apostle of Life (1991); The Warehouse Priest (1993); and an autobiography, Faithful for Life (1997). Among the recognitions for his pro-life work were being named "Catholic of the Year" by the Catholic Twin Circle, receiving the Cardinal John J. O'Connor Pro-Life Award from Legatus (2003), and meriting the Family Life International-"Faithful for Life Award" (2004) and Human Life International's Cardinal Von Galen Award " . . . in defense of innocent human life" (2007). In 2001 he was recognized at the World Family Conference for his thirty-year commitment to the pro-life cause. Father Paul died March 20, 2010, in the Saint Cloud Hospital and is buried in the Saint John's Cemetery.


9 Cubic Feet (6 archival storage boxes)

Language of Materials



The files are organized alphabetically by name.

Marx, Paul, O.S.B., 1920-2010. Papers, 1952-1983
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Saint John's University Archives and Special Collections Repository

P O Box 2500
Alcuin Library
Collegeville Minnesota 56321 United States