Concilium Bulletin March 2019
Accra Senatus: The Senatus is organising “Mass for Soul” projects where they go to an area and evangelise and also set up on outstation there.
Tema Comitium established 4 new praesidia and also revived 4 praesidia .On hospital visitation they made contact with over 1,800 people of all denominations, including patients, doctors and health workers; one of the hospitals greatly appreciated their apostolate and asked them to visit frequently. Mataheko Curia organised a Tridium for Alfie Lambe.
Luanda Senatus: Dom Pedro Luís Scarpa, Bishop Emeritus of Ndalatando, first Spiritual Director of the Luanda Regia, which later became the Senatus, has died, R.I.P. Dom Zeferino Zéca Martins, Auxiliary Bishop in Luanda, was appointed Archbishop of Huambo. The Archbishop of Luanda invited the Legion in Luanda to have a large participation at the installation of the new Archbishop. 53 legionaries from Luanda attended. There were three candidates for the election of Senatus President in November. The outgoing President was re-elected. A new Curia was set up in Bula Tumba. A meeting of praesidium officers was held in December, and was considered to be positive. An Annual Report for a Comitium in Cabinda shows 15 praesidia and 19 Curiae attached. Works undertaken included home and hospital visitation and some prison visitation.
Benguela Senatus: Dom Oscar Braga, Bishop Emeritus of Benguela, attended the December Senatus meeting and gave great encouragement to the members. He referred to the forthcoming Centenary of the Legion and the 50th anniversary of the creation of the Diocese of Benguela. The Senatus made visits to three of its affiliated Regiae: Kwito/Bié, Namibe and Huambo. A Curia was divided to form a second Curia. Praesidium reports show visitation of the sick at home and in hospital. Visits of evangelisation resulted in 18 Baptisms, ten people receiving the Sacrament of Reconciliation and two marriages. A junior Comitium has eight Curiae with 4,544 active legionaries. The Spiritual Director mentioned that the Bishops have dedicated these three years to youth. He said “It is necessary to give more attention to the education of our young people”.
Hwange Comitium: An e-mail was received in February giving a short report on the Comitium meeting. A praesidium reported doing home and hospital visitation, encouraging couples to marry in Church and catechumens to attend catechism classes. Extension of the senior and junior movement is planned. Harare Curia is working well and they hope to make contact with legionaries in other parts of Zimbabwe.
Lesotho Senatus: 141 people attended their Annual Conference, One Comitium organised a meeting for young legionaries and 52 attended including some who are disabled. The Spiritual Director and President spoke on the Acies at the January meeting. A praesidium reported visiting prisoners with mental health problems and attending Mass with them.
Cape Town Senatus: A committee is to be formed to plan for the Centenary celebrations and the 85th Anniversary of the Legion of Mary in Cape Town. A newly formed recruitment team started its work in January. A member of Spouse of the Holy Spirit praesidium has joined the seminary. A new praesidium was set up in the parish of Kracaifonein, and all members were well received at the Annual General Reunion which took place on 1st December. A Curia with 8 praesidia attached conducted two workshops on the True Devotion to Mary. Other works include home and hospital visitation and promoting and praying the Rosary in homes. A Congress organised by Port Elizabeth and East London Comitium was held on the 9th September and Bishop Zungu attended the Congress.
Johannesburg Senatus has 21 directly attached praesidia and is encouraging legionaries to visit parishes which are without the Legion with a view to extension. The Senatus is in contact with all its attached councils. Works undertaken include home and hospital visitation where many non-Catholics are met. All councils promote the Cause of Frank duff and have Masses offered each November.
Durban Comitium: The annual Retreat had a good attendance and arrangements are in place for the Acies. Matatiele Comitium, Kokstad Diocese: a praesidium of 12 members with 6 auxiliary members reported preparing 3 adults for Baptism, 9 returns to the Sacraments and 12 children prepared for First Communion. The attached Curia at Bizana has 12 praesidia.
Cape Verde Regia: Each month there are reports from 5 Comitia, 5 Curiae and one of the 12 praesidia directly attached to the Regia. Legion apostolate included Baptism of adults, youths and children. At the January meeting a new Spiritual Director was welcomed; he is a member of the Holy Ghost Congregation. Legionaries were informed of Frank Duff’s close connection with that Congregation having studied in one of their Colleges. Works include visiting the old and the sick. Help is given to arrange for admission of the sick to hospital including a psychiatric hospital. Extension is undertaken, and the Regia was pleased with the correspondent’s recognition of the work of Cabe Verdean Legionaries in the Cape Verde diaspora praesidia both in Europe and the United States.
Auckland Senatus: The Vice President from Tonga visited the Senatus and brought them up to date with 6 praesidia on the mainland and 2 in the islands. They have requested a visit from Senatus, as communication is very poor from them. The last 3 praesidia reporting have membership of 12, 14 and 10. Results showed a death-bed conversion, 2 cancer patients received into the Church, 4 returns to Mass and the Sacraments, and 2 marriages validated. Auckland junior Curia has 6 praesidia. They help seniors on visits to auxiliaries, and recruit and teach at the catechism classes.
Brisbane Comitium: A public Rosary on the seafront held on 13th October at 9.30a.m. had an attendance of 40. A Chinese lady was introduced to the RCIA programme and was later baptised. An auxiliary member while on a Legion Retreat returned to Confession after 40 years.
Sydney Senatus: Normanhurst Curia visited 270 homes, 138 shut-ins; they also teach catechism. 14 children were baptised and 23 had First Communion and Confirmation. 71 adults were introduced to the faith and 48 became Catholics.
Solomon Islands Comitium was visited and their spirit was found to be excellent with the Legion growing. Exploratio Dominicalis projects are proving to be successful.
Melbourne Senatus: Adelaide Comitium reported with 3 Curiae and 9 praesidia.
Perth Comitium has 3 Curia and 10 praesidia. Extension and personal contact gained new members. Bayside Curia has 7 senior and 2 junior praesidia. Prayers for vocations are encouraged. A successful Summer School was organised by Senatus and a talk on the Servant of God Alfie Lambe was given. The Legion will have a stand at the Youth Expo on 23rd March. Noumea Comitium in New Caledonia was visited by Senatus and was found to be very well run and active.
Bicolandia Senatus: The Senatus meeting takes place after morning Mass. at 9.00a.m. The council has 1 Regia, 5 Comitia, 9 Curia and 12 praesidia attached. Pili Curia has 18 members and 10 are Praetorians. Block Rosaries and jail visitation are undertaken and they supervise a praesidium in one jail. Partido Curia has 3 praesidia with 27 members and 2 junior praesidia with 40 members. Works include teaching catechism, Rosary at wakes and funerals and home visits to pray the Rosary.
Northern Philippines Senatus: A planning meeting took place over 2 days.
Pasig Comitium has 25 Patrician groups, including one in San Pedro prison. Each attached Curia established 2 senior and 2 junior praesidia. La Union and Vigan Comitia have the Legion in 47 of 134 parishes. Translation of the English Handbook to IIoko is being undertaken by Abbot Santos Rabang. The Regia of Antipolo has a total of 137 Patrician groups. 86 members attended an enclosed Retreat. Seminars were held on officerships. Home visitation is done and a Congress was held.
Cebu Senatus: Parish praesidia are engaged in visitation to homes, a jail, hospitals and nursing homes. Rosary beads and Miraculous Medals are distributed. Several new praesidia were established and members of the higher councils are constantly evaluating the ability of praesidia and Curiae to reach higher levels. Visitation to councils is well planned and a detailed Treasurers Report was given.
Western Visayas Senatus: 9 Comitia, 3 Curia and 1 Regia reported. Tigbaun Comitium reported on home visitation to 626 families, resulting in 28 Baptisms, 22 Confirmations and 10 marriage validations. Regia of Negros Occidental has 6 Comitia, 7 Curia and 12 directly attached praesidia. 3 new praesidia were established. 150 youth attended a 3 day Summer Camp. Aklan Comitium reported on the institution of 2 new Curiae, and two new praesidia, 1 senior and 1 junior. An officers training day had an attendance of 40 officers.
Mindanao Senatus: Chapter 27: ‘Government of the Legion’ was suggested to study by the correspondent as legionaries and officers are in too many other organisations and attendance at Curia is poor. A Regia held a workshop for correspondents and officers on how to make composite reports and examine Minutes. The regularization of marital unions, together with organisation of Church weddings featured in several reports. A Born Again Christian family returned to the faith following the persistent attention of a praesidium.
IRISH PROVINCIAL REPORT
Cloyne Comitium: Cobh praesidium has 5 members. Their works include crowd contact at the Cathedral every weekend, visitation of a nursing home and contact with the many visitors from the cruise liners that visit the town. They distribute prayer leaflets for the three Causes and took part in MEP projects in Fermoy, Mitchelstown and Charleville. East Cloyne Curia: Mitchelstown praesidium has 9 members and 35 auxiliaries; they distribute Miraculous Medals and Rosaries to First Communion and Confirmation children in local schools. West Cloyne Curia: Charleville praesidium has 7 members and 2 probationers. They had an MEP project in June with 24 legionaries participating.
Cork Comitium: A praesidium of 9 members and 2 Praetorians does home and Pilgrim statue visitation; they also visited 5 schools including a Community College and gave out about 2,000 Miraculous Medals while receiving a wonderful reception from both teachers and pupils. The 5 members of a praesidium with 5 members undertake Pilgrim statue and nursing home visitation, also distribute Holy Communion in a Care Centre. They have 10 auxiliaries. Muire na Gras Curia: A praesidium with 4 members visits auxiliaries, and they run a senior citizen’s club which is held weekly. Queen of Peace Curia: Works of a praesidium of 5 members include home and hospital visitation, weekly street contact and they also visit the Simon Community. A family prayer circle was formed using the Fatima statue and so far 6 families hosted this prayer circle. The praesidium is involved in efforts to start praesidia for the Polish and Indian communities. A praesidium with 12 members does street contact work and shows religious videos. While Eucharistic Adoration is in progress 3 couples do street contact work in the city centre twice a week. Annunciata Curia: Hospital and nursing home visitation and the sale of Catholic literature are the works of one praesidium.
Kerry Comitium: 25 legionaries attended the last Procession of the year through the streets of Killarney. They did crowd contact work and some good contacts were made. A Mass was organised by legionaries on Innisfallen Island at which 4 priests concelebrated and a large crowd attended. The Frank Duff prayer meeting continues to thrive with 33 at the last meeting. Bishop Ray Browne attended the December Comitium meeting and thanked the legionaries for their work.
Mid-Clare Comitium: At the February meeting the Annual Report of Mid-Clare Comitium was presented. They have 6 praesidia, 29 members and 24 auxiliaries. West Clare Curia has 4 praesidia with 22 members and East Clare Curia has 3 praesidia with 13 members and 51 auxiliaries. A member of Lisseycasey praesidium is helping the new praesidium in Ennis. Two members organise and attend Divine Mercy prayer meetings each month.
Thurles Comitium: Templemore praesidium has 6 members who undertake home, hospital and nursing home visitation and are involved in parish activities. Their first Holy Hour to promote the cause of Frank Duff was held on 13th March. A praesidium in Thurles with 11 members and a junior praesidium of 7 members does home and hospital visitation and has 4 Pilgrim statues in circulation. In response to the request from Archbishop Eamon Martin they promote the devotion to the Hearts of Jesus and Mary on home visitation and receive a very good response. Two members took part in the MEP project to Macroom which resulted in a new praesidium being set up. Representatives from Cashel, Murroe and Tipperary Curiae were present at the Comitium meeting.
Birr/Roscrea Curia: Borrisokane praesidium members visit nursing homes and have contact with Leaving Certificate students through distribution of prayer booklets. They succeeded in getting the statue of Our Lady of Fatima into 11 homes during the year, compiled a booklet on Indulgences and gave copies out at Masses in November. A bus load of members from the Curia attended the Alfie Lambe Mass in Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Church, Clonskeagh, Dublin on 24th February.
Limerick Curia: A reporting praesidium visits housing estates in Newcastlewest and Ardagh village. On home visits they promote the Rosary, Miraculous Medal and the Sacrament of Confession.
Lismore Curia: The Dungarvan praesidium has 7 active members. Works include home, hospital and nursing home visitation. They are also involved in the promotion of Eucharistic Adoration in the Diocese, and the Sunday Children’s Liturgy. A member was ordained to the Permanent Diaconate on 25th November 2018.
Ross Curia: Clonakilty praesidium has 15 members, having gained 3 members during the year. They have 20 auxiliaries. Works include hospital and nursing home visitation. A new initiative during the year was the promotion of the Fatima statue. On 13th October their Spiritual Director blessed the statue at the vigil Mass and parishioners were invited to have the statue in their homes. On the Feast of the Baptism of Our Lord 1,200 bottles of Holy Water were distributed after Masses to parishioners and to 120 young people preparing for First Holy Communion. They hosted a Child Safeguarding Course for the Curia in October.
Waterford Curia: A praesidium with 6 members undertakes home and elderly visitation. A praesidium with 5 members and 19 auxiliaries has a junior praesidium of 12 members. The juniors helped the seniors in putting together an Edel Quinn exhibition which has been displayed in 3 Churches. The juniors also visit nursing homes and carry out a street apostolate with seniors. The Rise and Shine Youth Group has a membership of 34 children. They took part in Adoration and all went to Confession during their Retreat in Mount Melleray. Members of the Curia attended a Child Safeguarding training day on 20th October.
Veneranda Curia has 10 praesidia. A monthly function promoting Irish Christian and cultural heritage is organised. Residents of the two Legion hostels are consoled and helped by members to find solutions to their problems. Two members are cataloguing the 1,700 books in Frank Duff house with a view to putting the records on the Legion website. A praesidium of 10 members, including 5 Praetorians, undertake home visitation, street contact, hostel work and prison visits. Inmates are taught prayers and encouraged to receive the Sacraments. A number of the prisoners have become members of the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association.
Bethlehem Curia comprises 10 praesidia. A praesidium of 4 active and 1 probationer recite the Rosary fortnightly at a community care centre. They promote the Maria Legionis magazine and, on a few occasions, undertook park contact and home visitation at a local apartment complex. 11 members took part in an Exploratio Pro Christo project to another parish which included home visitation, park contact and crowd contact after weekend Masses. 12 attended a Patrician meeting entitled ‘How can we involve people in the Faith?’
Presentata Curia has 17 praesidia attached. Four reporting praesidia have a total membership of 35 active, 14 auxiliaries, 4 probationers and 4 praetorians. 5 members took their Promise during the year. Work is undertaken in the Morning Star hostel – helping in the kitchen, at reception and with the Men’s Shed. An annual Good Friday Retreat had an attendance of 60 people. Many lapsed Catholics are met on street contact and the legionaries’ approach is discussed regularly at the weekly meeting to seek to improve the apostolate. 30 people attended two Patrician meetings on the topics of ‘Lent’ and ‘Islam’. An apostolate to people suffering from addictions is carried out through street contact and a Healing Mass is promoted monthly at a local parish. Members received a hugely positive response to the parish-wide project organised of offering holy water fonts at a small fee to families while on home visitation. As many people were not practising, this provided a good opportunity for evangelisation.
Exaltata Curia: A praesidium of 9 active members with 3 Praetorians reported visitation of over 1,000 homes during the year. Many requests for prayers for recovery from illness and a solution to family problems were received. The Pilgrim statue of Our Lady is brought to a different home each week. An average of 30 people attended public Rosaries at different parish locations organised during May and October. 31 parishioners attended a Retreat organised by the praesidium and two processions in honour of Our Lady had an average attendance of 70 people. An Exploratio project resulted in one home accepting the Pilgrim statue and one prospective Legion member.
Porta Coeli Curia Efforts are on-going to re-establish a praesidium. A recruiting drive was held in the parish over two weekends in September, following which one probationary member was gained. Members assist at the weekly meeting from various praesidia and report on their weekly work in their own parish.
Senatus of La Paz: The Senatus officers were delighted to take part in the 60th Anniversary celebrations of Alfie Lambe in Buenos Aires. The Senatus President, who worked with Alfie and Oonagh Twomey in Bolivia, gave a talk on Alfie’s life to a large group during the celebrations. The Senatus is mourning the recent death of their Spiritual Director of many years, Mgr. Gonzalo. The Regia of Santa Cruz was delighted with the visit by Bro. Noel Lynch who visited many praesidia as well as the Regia meeting. The President was thrilled to be able to get answers on so many Legion matters. The Regia covers almost half of the country, but despite this they are able to visit their distant councils.
Senatus of Santiago: A new apostolate is the information stall in a hospital at which legionaries engage with those visiting the hospital. It is hoped that the Senatus will avail of the offer to engage with the Argentinian councils of Mendoza and Punta Arenas near the border with Chile. One of the councils organised a Summer School. It was suggested that such events could include master and apprentice work done during the day as a means to train legionaries in home visitation and street contact. The Senatus is very active in extension and Exploratio Dominicalis projects in rural towns which are a target of the sects.
Senatus of Medellin: The Senatus organised a P.P.C. project from 1st to 16th December in Marmato Caldas, a mining town. The 30 legionaries divided into 5 teams. Much contact was done at the entrance to the mines, the priest blessing each mine in turn. In addition 830 homes were visited. 11 catechesis centres were organised with an attendance of 1,430 people, and 75 youngsters attended the 2 youth camps. In the Regia of Cali, attendance at the Regia meetings is over 90%. In conjunction with the Dioceses, several praesidia undertake the visitation of dysfunctional homes.
Senatus of Bogota is made up of 8 Regiae, 7 Comitia, 6 Curiae and 9 praesidia, with over 26,000 active and 72,000 auxiliary members. Two representatives travelled to Buenos Aires for the Alfie Lambe celebrations and others attended World Youth Day in Panama where they helped at the Legion stand. They sent 100 Handbooks and 1,000 Tesserae to Venezuela due to shortages there. There are reports of Congresses with good attendances, also workshops dealing with Formation, Recruitment and Extension. The Legion has been set up in the final 2 areas of the 24 under the Senatus control. A P.P.C. project to Ubaque resulted in a new praesidium. The Regia of Cartagena reports setting up a new senior Curia and a new junior Curia. Works include contacting taxi-drivers and the homeless, and evangelisation during food-distribution sessions to Venezuelan migrants. A Rosary pack is widely used. Kindergarten children are taught the Rosary and work is done with special-needs children. Nature walks are organised for children during which, rubbish is collected. Sacred Heart Enthronement is widely reported while there is much mention of co-habiting couples marrying and having their children baptised. Results included conversion of an evangelical family, a Protestant pastor returning to the Catholic Church, two drug addicts recovered and 15 prisoners recruited as auxiliary members.
Senatus of Quito: Six councils reported in January but little information appears in the Minutes. 16 legionaries attended World Youth Day in Panama. Two officers visited the attached Regia of Cuenca in November.
Senatus of Asuncion: The Senatus comprises 19,100 active members in 1 Regia, 9 senior Comitia and 1 junior Comitium, 20 Curiae and 15 praesidia. There are 3 seminary and 1 prison praesidia; the latter is in the women’s prison. They have a committee of correspondents and another for the promotion of Alfie Lambe. Two P.P.C. projects were carried out. 82 young adults attended the National Youth Conference. Police stations are visited in what is considered a novel work.
Senatus of Montevideo: 1 Comitium, 2 Curiae and 3 praesidia reported. Works include an apostolate with disabled children, visiting the sick and auxiliary members, home, nursing home, hospital, and prison visitation. One new praesidium was formed and efforts are underway to set one up in the Cathedral parish. In February legionaries went on P.P.C. to the Diocese of Salto.
Senatus of Lima: 7 Comitia, 14 Curiae and 2 praesidia reported. These reports gave news of impressive growth: 277 new members, 4 new senior and 1 new junior praesidia. There are now a total of 489 senior and 44 junior praesidia comprising 4,569 senior and 376 junior members, over 13,000 auxiliaries and 456 Adjutorians. Works include home visitation, street contact, visiting orphanages, and running Patrician meetings. Practically all praesidia carry out an annual Exploratio Dominicalis project. A praesidium has been set up in the women’s prison. Night Fever type apostolates have been organised. Much apostolic work is carried out in the schools, for example 87 students attended a 1 day Retreat held by the Legion and 156 Primary School children were spoken with. Evangelising was undertaken in the University Campus of St. John the Baptist. 64 people made the De Montfort consecration to Jesus through Mary. Conversions include a Jehovah Witness family, a young Adventist and 3 Evangelicals. Work is done with alcoholics, and AIDS sufferers in areas of drugs and violence.
Senatus of Caracas: An attached Comitium reported over 1,300 recruiting efforts resulting in 87 new members. Extension features in almost all reports from attached councils. The junior movement is also good and recruiting is evident. The growth of the Senatus may require the raising of new higher councils. The Senatus asks for prayers to resolve the current political difficulties.