Concilium Bulletin April 2012

Concilium Bulletin April 2012



Kenya Senatus: The monthly prayers at Venerable Edel’s grave in January had an attendance of 48. Plans are well underway for the anniversary Mass in May. Nairobi prison praesidium has 10 members.
Kisumu Regia reported that in the course of hospital visitation 214 were anointed and 264 baptised and 423 of them died later. There were 259 marriages regularised, and 1,603 joined the catechism class and were baptised. They also report the recovery of 91 alcoholics and 12 drug addicts. Also one witch doctor left the practice. Two Curiae were set up. Plans are ongoing for the 75th anniversary of the Legion in the Kisumu Regia area. The Senatus is busy planning the extension of the Legion into dioceses where it does not exist. They are also helping weak Curiae.

Blantyre Senatus: The Senatus has 12 directly attached praesidia, 11 Curiae and 15 Comitia in Blantyre Archdiocese and it is well organised and governs the Legion throughout Malawi, having 10 directly attached Comitia and 4 Regia in other dioceses. Councils are visited and workshops organised. A Mass to celebrate the Legion’s 90th Birthday was concelebrated by Bishop Montfort Stima and Fr. Khembo, Senatus Spiritual Director. The Bishop emphasised that the Church depends very much on the Legion and its prayers and that Legion works play a great role in sustaining the Catholic Faith.

Uganda Senatus: Reports give insights into prison work, which cannot be done in isolation, but needs co-operation between the chaplains, prison staff, extension workers and Legionary inmates. One Comitium reported 723 lapsed returned, 88 marriages rectified, 134 baptised, 13 Moslems joined the Church including 2 ex prisoners and 9 satanic practioners had their shrines demolished and undertook instruction in the faith. The Senatus aims to give a Handbook to all newly ordained priests. Music festivals for youth with a religious theme are organised and 2 new Comitia were inaugurated.

Ibadan Senatus: One Comitium had 16 conversions, 14 lapsed returned, 213 marriages rectified and a couple returned to the sacraments after 30 years. A talk on Alfie Lambe was held by one Curia, while another had a Mass and a third organised a Frank Duff exhibition.

Abuja Regia: The average attendance of council officers is 43% and that of praesidia officers is 61%. One Comitium reported many conversions, lapsed returned, 9 marriages rectified, 21 broken homes reconciled and 8 praesidia formed. The annual report of the Regia showed 10,175 conversions (including 781 Muslims). Abuja will be inaugurated as a Senatus on 22nd April 2012.

Lagos Regia: The average attendance of council officers is 64% and that of praesidia officers is 31%. The correspondent advised that Exploratio Dominicalis could not be done with Charismatics. A Comitium held Frank Duff novenas in June and November and had a Triduum for Venerable Edel. They reported 38 marriages rectified, 66 lapsed returned, 7 conversions and 6 praesidia started.

Enugu Senatus: A Comitium with 2,460 senior Legionaries, 912 of whom are Praetorians and 15 junior Curiae with a membership of 4,582 reports adults and children prepared for the sacraments, family disputes reconciled and marriages blessed and senior and junior praesidia established by all those reporting.
A Comitium attached to Onitsha Regia reported many returns to the Sacraments, 56 received into the Church, many of whom had been pagans. Couples cohabiting were encouraged to marry in Church and 115 did so. In another Comitium area 4 new Curiae were created.

Jos Regia: During the year one Comitium recruited 595 members; many members were among those who fled the area as a result of the unrest. Distant praesidia and councils were visited. The Legion apostolate continues in the Regia area despite the troubles, prayers are requested for peace there.

Ikot Ekpene Regia: A Comitium organised a seminar on reviving weak praesidia and councils while another with over 1,500 members does home and hospital visitation, prepares adults and children for the sacraments and great attention is given to care of junior praesidia.

Dar-Es-Salaam Comitium: The 2012 schedule of activities was discussed in detail. Preparations are continuing for a Peregrinatio Pro Christo project to Zanzibar. Extension is being undertaken in a new parish. Lack of suitable permanent premises is a problem as is poor attendance though the latter is improving. Following the approval of Concilium Dar-Es-Salaam Comitium will be inaugurated as a Regia in the near future.

Mtwara Comitium: Works include encouraging couples to have their marriages blessed, children to attend Mass and other devotions, visiting the sick and bringing them Holy Communion and preparing people for the sacraments. They reported one lapsed returned and a couple married in Church.

Hai Moshi Comitium: Reports include home and hospital visitation with many returns to the sacraments and marriages blessed, preparing adults and children for the sacraments and teaching children prayers. They also have an apostolate to alcohol and drug addicts and dangerous drivers.
Kilema Comitium: A short e-mail was received after almost 3 years silence. The President has been ill. They have 12 Curiae, 55 praesidia and 1038 members.

Lusaka Regia: A detailed programme for the year and the timetable for a workshop on True Devotion to Mary were received. Works include home and hospital visitation where Legionaries pray and encourage patients and staff. They plan to set up more junior praesidia and 2 Comitia have been split. They promise an early response to the correspondent’s request for details of the election there.

In Banjul Curia a junior praesidium has grown to 30 members; 14 senior and 6 junior members visited an area with less than 0.5% Christians to help recruit for the local praesidium.


Senatus of Rome celebrated the 90th anniversary of the Legion at a Commemorative Mass in the St. John Latern Basilica presided over by Monsignor Paolo Mancini, Secretary General of the Vicariate of Rome. The Senatus Spiritual Director, Monsignor Virgilio La Rosa, was chief celebrant assisted by Spiritual Directors from praesidia and Curiae. Extension has picked up throughout the whole Senatus area and in Sardinia.

Milan Regia: Fr. Bradshaw’s book on Frank Duff has been translated into Italian and 500 copies are being distributed. Excerpts from Hilda Firtel’s book on Alfie Lambe are being recorded by Radio Mater, Milan. A Filipino praesidium helped find employment for 4 of their compatriots.
Padova Comitium reported the return of two people to the sacraments after many visits. A praesidium in Brunico, Tyrol, runs a children’s club and young legionaries in Lana Curia recite the Rosary on Radio Mater once a month while German speaking legionaries visit the families of newly baptised babies. They also visit new parishioners and held an auxiliary rally.

Legionaries help with the Sunday liturgy as readers and ushers and contact members of the congregation afterwards. They promote the Rosary by recitation at a Grotto and on visitation with the statue of Our Lady. They lead a prayer group, teach catechism and hold Bible classes for children. They visit homes for the elderly and also visit a jail.

Malta Regia: The Regia had 3 Peregrinatio Pro Christo projects to Italy and one to England in 2011. A praesidium of 7 members organised two half-day retreats for auxiliaries. A praesidium of 10 members contacts refugees, Muslims, and non-Catholics. A statue of Our Lady is taken to the local primary school each week. A junior praesidium of 5 works with senior legionaries on hospital visitation.
Hope of the World Curia distributed 100 copies of the Treatise on the True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. Several families were consecrated to the Sacred Heart. The statue of Our Lady was taken to a Power Station where the Rosary was recited. Four of the 13 praesidia in Handmaid of the Lord Curia hold Patrician meetings. Queen of Peace Curia reported an attendance of 30 including some tourists at an outdoor Rosary. One third of the parishes in Malta have a junior praesidium.

Gozo Comitium: The Bishop of Gozo attended the September meeting as part of the 90th Anniversary celebrations. The celebration activities included night adoration and a competition for the best power- point presentation for junior members. Some results included six prospective senior members, three new juniors, and six auxiliaries. The True Devotion is discussed every month.

Countries under the Caretakership of Malta
Membership is increasing in Istanbul and the legionaries have grasped the idea of apostleship. Prayers are needed for the new praesidium in Izmir to overcome some of its difficulties.

The only contact with Greece was a recent e-mail from Fr Luke, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Rhodes. The Legion is growing in Rhodes and nine new members took their promise in January. The apostolate includes reaching out to the many tourists during the summer months and giving them Legion literature.

The Malta correspondent and a member of the Regia visited Albania in December. They attended a Mass to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the foundation of the Legion in Albania. The chief celebrant was His Grace Monsignor Angelo Massafra, Archbishop of Skhroder, assisted by His Excellency Monsignor George Frendo Auxiliary Bishop of Tirana-Durres Diocese and seven Priests. St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Skhroder was packed to capacity. The Mass was transmitted live on Radio Maria. Meetings were held with the Officers and Spiritual Director of the Comitium and attached Curiae. The legionaries work closely with the Priests to promote Radio Maria as a means of catechesis. The apostolate also includes visiting families to have their children baptised, encouraging people to frequent the sacraments and teaching catechism.

Lisbon Senatus: A praesidium contacts its 67 auxiliaries on their birthdays and also invites them to the Acies and afternoons of reflection. They contact parents on the baptism of their children and congratulate them on their wedding anniversaries. Visits to nursing homes for the old involves recitation of the Rosary, bible reading, and Hymns to Our Lady. Apostolate to the sick in hospitals involves the helping of patients to take medicine. Many praesidia prepare children to complete the full catechetical program.

The Regia of Porto has set up a new Comitium. The Senatus organised a meeting of extension workers from several Comitia.

Madrid Senatus: A Congress organised by the Comitium of Salamanca was attended by the Archbishop who praised the personal contact work of the legionaries. The Comitium of Badajoz is a youthful council with great hopes for the future. A parish priest has asked the legionaries to work with youth. The young people they speak with are interested in the visitation of hospitals and homes for the elderly. The Curia of Malaga was praised for keeping many of the churches open by inviting their contacts to visit the Blessed Sacrament. Recruiting for active membership is done monthly. One of their Spiritual Directors suggested that legionaries should not be afraid of growing old but live with a youthful spirit. Pesca Joven, fishing for youth, contacting young people on the street, is done during the day and also by a night shift which starts at 11.00 pm.

Bilbao Senatus: Spanish classes are given to immigrants. Legionaries help with breakfasts for down and outs. In Santander the Rosary is said near an abortion clinic with other groups and with a priest in attendance. The book-barrow is brought out once a month.

Barcelona Senatus: Membership is generally elderly and there is a shortage of Spiritual Directors. A praesidium in Barcelona help a blind lady by reading to her, helps in a food centre, and does home visitation. Prostitutes, mostly foreigners, are helped with the language and they try to get them jobs. They got a cleaning job for one person but could not get a work permit. Street people are contacted, some for over 30 years. In Murcia they do door duty at churches so that they may remain open. A Romanian man was prepared for the sacraments. The Curia of Valencia has a monthly meeting with auxiliaries, has 12 Patrician groups, and visits jails.


Cincinnati Senatus: Members of 6 praesidia visit prisoners, pray with them and teach them how to say the Rosary. An indoor praesidium was set up among the prisoners themselves, they have their officers and work is assigned within the prison. Reports show a number of praesidia with membership in double figures. Works include teaching non-Catholics how to say the Rosary and instructing prospective converts. They are grateful for the Concilium visit.

Boston Senatus: Door-to-door and Pilgrim Statue visitation is done, wakes and funerals are attended. Junior legionaries help children preparing for First Communion.

Houston Senatus: A successful Peregrination Pro Christo project was held in Sulphur, Louisiana in March. There were over 800 contacts made having visited 1,200 homes. The Bishop expressed gratitude at a Mass on the Friday. A group of 12 is travelling to Ireland for the International Eucharistic Congress and have volunteered to do a Peregrinatio Pro Christo project in a Dublin parish. Eighty calls were made on a project organised by Tyler Comitium in a mainly non-Catholic area.

Chicago Senatus: Northside Curia makes good contacts at Millennium Park and at the Train station. The Hispanic southside Curia has 9 praesidia and 2 junior groups. Sioux Falls Curia started a praesidium of 9 members and permission for one at the Cathedral. As a result of home visitation 25 new parishioners were registered for the parish and 2 returns to the sacraments. Our Lady of Knock praesidium at St. Peter’s Church had a return of a lady to her Faith after a 30-year lapse.

Philadelphia Senatus: A praesidium just a year old has 12 members and 6 probationers, mostly young adults and have 4 praetorians. They organised a 33-day preparation for True Devotion to Mary in which 20 parishioners participated. Mater Dolorosa Curia doubled membership in the past year. Forty took part in a New Year’s Eve evening of recollection. Norristown Comitium organised a 3-day retreat for homeless men who attend the Brother House project, which operates 2 nights a week. They also visit a state prison and a psychiatric hospital, hold Patricians and run a book barrow. 350-400 attended a Marian Day at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary organised by two praesidia in the Seminary, guest speaker was Fr. Groeschel, CFR.

Miami Regia is following up councils and praesidia, which fail to report when due. Most of its affiliated councils have junior praesidia attached and the Regia has a junior Curia affiliated. Three officers in the Regia are now filled by newcomers, but there remains a good balance of experience, including Fr. Richard Souliere, former Legion Envoy to Mexico, who is their faithful Spiritual Director.

San Francisco Senatus: Stockton, Idaho and Sacramento Comitia reported in November with membership of between 2 and 6 active and 20 and 200 auxiliaries. Works include home-to-home visitation, street contact, public Rosaries, prison ministry and teaching catechism to children and adults. The most recently set-up Korean Comitium has 9 praesidia and 3 Curiae attached with 18, 12 and 2 praesidia affiliated. Seattle Comitium has 13 praesidia and 9 Curiae, visiting non-practising Catholics, helping 17 contacts back to the Church. Portland Curia shows attendance of 90% for the last two months. In preparation for a Columban drive they made a novena to Frank Duff and obtained 29 names of prospective members, of whom 5 attended a praesidium meeting, including several Spanish-speaking persons.

Toronto Senatus: Mississauga Comitium reported 27 members undertaking the 33 day preparation for the total consecration. Muslims and Hindus prayed the Rosary during Pilgrim Virgin visits. Peterborough Curia gained 11 active and 14 auxiliary members. Niagara Curia obtained 25 new members. North Toronto Curia gained 4 new members and 5 probationers. Many members undertook the 33-day preparation. Winnipeg Curia is also undertaking extension - works include home, hospital and Pilgrim Statue visitation as well as enthronement of homes to the Sacred Heart. Senior and junior legionaries provide catechetical instruction. After its Columban drive Hamilton Comitium gained many new Filipino auxiliary members. Door-to-door evangelisation, prison ministry, visitation of hospitals, Sacred Heart enthronements, and street apostolate feature in reports. The three Legion Causes are promoted on home visitation. 100 attended the Mary and the Word day of recollection in Scarborough Comitium.

Senatus of Santiago de los Caballeros: Homes, hospitals, clinics, prisons and the bereaved; promoting the Rosary, preparing children for First Holy Communion and Confirmation; catechesis to youth and adults and conducting retreats are works reported on with excellent contacts. The Comitium of Madra de la Creación with 10 praesidia and 7 attached Curiae, has 168 active, 124 auxiliaries and 14 praetorian members. An Evangelical family met on visitation requested a visit from a priest and, after being prepared, now have joined the Catholic Church and received the sacraments. Comitium Virgen Prudentisima has 2 junior and 2 senior Curiae attached with 367 active, 27 praetorians, 297 auxiliary and 8 adjutorian members. A couple in an irregular marriage had separated but were re-united with the help of the legionaries and are now being prepared for the Sacrament of Matrimony. Madre Castisima with 3 Curiae and 8 praesidia plan to extend into areas where there is no Legion.

Senatus of Haiti: Attendances ranged from 58% to 82%. Regular correspondents’ meetings are invaluable as the conditions of roads makes visitation very difficult and there is much communication by phone. Homes, hospitals, and prisons are visited. Contact is made on streets and in markets, people with disabilities and the elderly are visited; mortuary vigils, accompanying priests on sick calls, organising youth praesidia, catechism, literacy and marriage courses and animation of Masses are undertaken. Many, after preparation, return to the sacraments and the Church.

Puerto Rico Senatus: Book barrow contact work undertaken as well as follow up of parish census contacts. Abandoned and abused children are looked after. A junior praesidium was set up. One family was brought back from spiritualism. There were many returns to the sacraments. A talk by a police officer was arranged for youths on the dangers of drug-taking.

Teresa de Ridder
Envoy to Chile - 1965 -1971

Teresa de Ridder, former Envoy to Chile, died recently in the Netherlands may she rest in peace. Teresa was Dutch and joined the Legion in the Netherlands in the early sixties. She volunteered and was accepted as an envoy and was assigned to Chile in 1965 where she gave six years service until March 1971. Teresa de Ridder set up and extended the Legion in Chile during the late sixties. This was the period immediately after the Second Vatican Council, which was a difficult time. It is a very big country and she travelled from Punta Arenas in the south to Arica in the North of the country. Some of the legionaries in Chile still remember Teresa with fondness. The small seeds she sowed in those days continue to grow and produce fruit in the Legion in Chile.

On return to the Netherlands there was no Legion in her parish and despite efforts she was not successful in setting up a praesidium. However, she continued as an Adjutorian member and gave a great service in her parish, particularly preparing children for the sacraments. There was a packed church at her funeral Mass, many of the congregation spoke about the instruction and Catholic formation she had imparted to them and their children during the years of her commitment in the parish.

Teresa has been in a nursing home for the past year or so and died on 4th April 2012, may she rest in peace.

Any Legion council officers who are registering for the International Eucharistic Congress in Dublin are asked to note that the June 2012 Concilium meeting will take place on SATURDAY 9th June 2012 at 3.00 pm in Legion headquarters